The Ryan Murphy directed Eat, Pray, Love is frame to frame a Julia Roberts movie.
She plays the role of a woman who seeks her self, a journey which takes her from the US to Italy, India and finally Bali where she finds her love. Unable to live with her husband she divorces him and strikes a friendship with a young man who has a guru in India. Over a misunderstanding they part ways, but she tells herself that she will bounce back by going to Italy to eat pasta and to India to meet the guru and Bali where she has a medicine man.
The opening aerial shot of a green field with birds flying is pastorally beautiful. When at night Julia Roberts prays to god telling him 'god tell me what to do and I will do' sort of made me empathise with her. How many times we would have muttered those words or would have come close to doing so.
In Italy, she meets a man who teaches her Italian and a family who have a nice talking and eating binge. In one instance in a barbershop a man says that she is rigid and American and so can never relax and enjoy life. You must be Italian and know what is dolce far niente, pleasant idleness. Then she goes to India where she stays in an ashram of the guru and tries to meditate and meets an American (Richard Jenkins) who speaks about his divorce.
Finally she goes to Bali and meets the medicine man whom she met at the beginning of the film. She meets Javier Bardem, falls in love and they stay together.
Well it is a journey into the world and into her own self, where she confronts various people and situations and tragedies in the life of others. All these contribute to her transformation and she is able to look at life and herself differently. It is a reflection on one's own self using things outside as a mirror. I enjoyed the movie because of its delightful dialogues (I am having a relationship with a pizza, says Julia Roberts while relishing a pizza), nice pleasant background music and some nice songs.
Many critics have panned this film, saying it is for Julia Roberts lovers and it is self-obsessed (I think introspection has to be self-obsessed). The best criticism I liked was this: Eat popcorn, pray the film ends and love Richard Jenkins.
Whatever the critics say, I liked it and stick to that view.