Sex in Seattle
Directed by Cameron Crowe "Singles" is what I call a generational movie, basically one which deals with the ups and downs of a specific generation. In this case we are talking about twenty something's as they deal with various issues, mainly of the romantic variety as they make their way in Seattle. Now whilst I was hitting my twenties when "Singles" came out I have to admit I find it not so much hard to relate to but still feeling like I am sitting on the outside as an observer. I struggle to connect with the characters or their issues but still find it entertaining, just not as entertaining as I am sure others do especially those who on release were a little older and can appreciate the Seattle scene.
So "Singles" is basically a look at the various romantic ups and downs of a group of interlinked twenty somethings, they are either dating, have dated or would like to date. And so we watch as Linda Powell after some disastrous relationships meets Steve who really likes her and wants to make their relationship work, as such he frets over calling her, coming across as needy and so on. Then there is Janet who is in love with musician Cliff but Cliff is not so in love with her almost stringing her along and so we watch as Janet would like to get Cliff to love her as much as she loves him. And so it goes on as Steve and Janet are close friends, one of Linda's ex's is still close to her and basically these people all inter connect in one form or another and are all dealing with the turmoil of relationships.
Now to be honest that doesn't sound that original, there have been other movies which do the same sort of thing as a group of interlinked people deal with various issues and hang-ups. But what "Singles" does is speak to a specific group of people, the twenty something group at the start of the 90s and as such it does have greater appeal to those who can relate to these issues. It also has greater appeal for those who were embracing the Seattle scene at the start of the 90s where grunge music was at its most popular. But that is where I struggle because I can't relate to these people and their issues as strongly as others and for me it makes it a movie with limited appeal. I don't mean that people won't enjoy it but it is one that really speaks to a select bunch.
But despite this Cameron Crowe fills it with memorable moments, the various introductions to the various characters are brilliant especially when it comes to Cliff and his idolisation of Jimi Hendrix. But it is also moments as the movie develops and watching Steve buying every pregnancy test kit under the sun is simply memorably amusing. Even the location, the apartment block and their own little community is memorable and works well to create the hub of all the drama and relationships.
Now with "Singles" being about a collective of characters it is the combination of a lot of solid performances which makes it work. At its centre there is Campbell Scott and Kyra Sedgewick as Steve and Linda whose relationship appears to be the main storyline and both Scott and Sedgewick deliver the ups and downs of their relationship, the fear, the hurt and so on. And then on the outskirts you have a memorable performance from Matt Dillon as Cliff Poncier, beautifully comical with out becoming forced which works well with Bridget Fonda as his girlfriend Janet. Plus even the smaller roles for the likes of Bill Pullman, Sheila Kelley, James LeGros and Jim true all add to this concoction of friendship and romance.
What this all boils down to is that "Singles" is a good movie which looks at the various relationships and issues of a group of twenty somethings. But it is a movie which is generational and unless you can fully connect with the characters, the Seattle scene and the various issues it does leave you on the outside looking in.