Groundhog Day (1993) Review

It’s seems like an appropriate time to review this movie.

turkey
As opposed to, say, Thanksgiving

It’s seems like an appropriate time to review this movie.

Ha, get it?

This is a great film. I usually don’t like romantic comedies (on account of my penis) but I do love this movie. It’s funny, but it’s also a very complex movie.

When Phil (Bill Murray) starts off repeating the same day, he quickly realizes that he has the freedom to do whatever he wants. He steals money, sleeps with random women, does all the things that we don’t do in normal society because we have to deal with tomorrow.

Annie
Shut the hell up, Annie

Along the way, he tries to sleep with his producer Rita. We get to see his many attempts, making little changes each time, culminating in his perfect date… except he still can’t close the deal. This is where his character kind of goes crazy. He starts blowing the early parts of the dates; he has a kind of desperation and anxiety in everything he does. And really, you can’t blame him. He must have gone through that date thousands of times.

This is where the movie gets dark. Phil becomes suicidal, but he learns he can’t even kill himself. Based off of some of the skills and knowledge Phil acquires over the length of the film, he’s been reliving the same day for years, at least. An endless torture that not even death can free you from? That sounds a lot like hell to me.

Hannah Montana
Worse than a Hannah Montana marathon

After he learns that he can’t die, Phil starts to try and appreciate the hand he’s been dealt. Along the way, he finds out that, on February 2nd, the homeless man he’s been ignoring the whole time dies. Phil does everything he can to help save his life, but no matter what he does, the homeless man dies. It’s a tearjerker, to be sure, but it’s important to his character development. Phil realizes that, as much as he’s started to learn about the people in town, he’s grown to love them.

It’s sweet and cheesy, but it really is heartwarming to see him interacting with the town. Of course, that’s what ultimately gets him the love of Rita and the escape from his day. He went through hell, but at least he got a happy ending.

massage
Happy ending is two dollars extra

It’s a great movie, but, as with Ghostbusters, Bill Murray makes it work. I honestly cannot imagine this film would have been nearly as good with anyone else. The deadpan humor, the genuine despair, everything he does is great. Bill Murray is the man.

Final Verdict: You get to hear the following song repeatedly, and Groundhog Day somehow makes it work…

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