Smile of the Day January 10, 2021: Sideways
At the 10th Critics’ Choice Movie Awards: “Sideways” wins Best Film
Sideways is a 2004 American comedy-drama road film directed by Alexander Payne and written by Jim Taylor and Payne. A film adaptation of Rex Pickett’s 2004 novel of the same name, Sideways follows two men in their forties, Miles Raymond (Paul Giamatti), a depressed teacher and unsuccessful writer, and Jack Cole (Thomas Haden Church), a past-his-prime actor, who take a week-long road trip to Santa Barbara County wine country to celebrate Jack’s upcoming wedding. Sandra Oh and Virginia Madsen also star. The film premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival on September 13, 2004, and was released in the United States on October 22, 2004.
Sideways received widespread acclaim from critics and won the Academy Award for Best Adapted Screenplay, and was nominated for Best Picture, Best Director, Best Supporting Actor (Haden Church) and Best Supporting Actress (Madsen) as well as many other nominations and awards (per Wikipedia).
A week before his friend Jack is to be married, best man Miles and the prospective groom head off to wine country for a week of fun, relaxation and – of course – wine drinking. Miles is the oenophile and does his best to teach Jack a bit about the art of appreciating great wine. All Jack cares about is drinking and carousing, something he accomplishes when he meets the attractive Stephanie at one of the vineyards. Miles is something of a sad sack, a high school English teacher who is a failed writer at heart. He has yet to get over the fact that his wife has divorced him and that she has remarried and he now faces that nerve racking wait for word from a prospective publisher. Miles has an opportunity to start anew when he meets Stephanie’s friend Maya but when he lets slip that Jack is about to be married any hope of a relationship seems to be lost (per https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0375063/).
The film drew attention and increased tourism to the Santa Ynez Valley wine-growing region of California’s Central Coast. Throughout the film, Miles speaks fondly of the red wine varietal Pinot Noir while denigrating Merlot. Following the film’s U.S. release in October 2004, Merlot sales dropped 2% while Pinot Noir sales increased 16% in the Western United States. A similar trend occurred in British wine outlets.
A 2009 study by Sonoma State University found that Sideways slowed the growth in Merlot sales volume and caused its price to fall, but the film’s main effect on the wine industry was a rise in the sales volume and price of Pinot Noir and in overall wine consumption (per Wikipedia).
First, a Story:
I love cooking with wine. Sometimes I even put it in the food.
Second, a Song:
Rolfe Kent was born in St Albans, Hertfordshire, England. He attended St Albans School, worked at Balrossie School in Renfrewshire, Scotland, then graduated in Psychology (BSc) from the University of Leeds in 1986. 1986-1988 he taught psychology at Leeds Polytechnic (now Leeds Beckett University) before moving to London to concentrate on film scoring.
Rolfe lives in Los Angeles, California, United States. He was nominated for a Golden Globe Award in the “Best Original Score” category for Sideways.
He also composed the music for the movies Slums of Beverly Hills, The Men Who Stare at Goats, Wedding Crashers, Legally Blonde, About Schmidt, Freaky Friday, Mean Girls, Election, Town & Country, Kate & Leopold, The Matador, 17 Again, Reign Over Me, Thank You for Smoking, The Hunting Party, The Lucky Ones, Gun Shy, Ghosts of Girlfriends Past, Just Like Heaven, Gambit, Dom Hemingway, Up in the Air and Rock Dog. In addition, he composed the theme song to the Showtime Original Series Dexter, for which he was nominated for the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Main Title Theme Music (per Wikipedia).
The songs from the movie are on YouTube, but unfortunately without any video running. Here is the trailer for Sideways with music from the movie as the background. I hope you enjoy this.
Thought for the Day:
“In a weird way, I like to find the quirkiness in ordinary things. I like to find what is ordinary in quirky people.” – Paul Giamatti
(You can watch Sideways on the Starz channel on Amazon Prime Video. There is a free 30 day trial for Starz)
Have a great day!
Dave & Colleen
© 2021 David J. Bilinsky and Colleen E. Bilinsky
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