Groundhog Day

Groundhog Day ★★★★½

It has been about 3 years from I had watched this one, and it confirms my love for it. It also reminded me of just how smart, funny and sweet this film manages to be. Bill Murray is probably at his best here, and thanks to a wonderfully written script, and careful continuity Groundhog Day is endearing and somewhat life-affirming.

What the film does best lies in the very concept: a man repeating the same day over and over. It is inexplicable. We don't get explanation as to why he is repeating his day in some logical or fantastical way as we have seen in the recent 'Edge of Tomorrow: Live Die Repeat'. It is something that cannot be explained it seems, and it begs us to wonder if the reason is that he simply hasn't lived his day with fulfillment or positiveness, but instead being sarcastic, cynical and mean-spirited.

The reason I love the idea so much is that it really comments on the mundanity of everyday life. Even when Phil (Bill Murray) comes to the bar asking two men what they would do if they're days where the same over and over, one says "that about sums it up for me." Life can feel like a methodical cycle of events. You wake up, shave, eat breakfast, go to work, come home, eat, sleep and repeat. Groundhog Day reminds you that a lot more happens around you. Different lives simultaneously existing, and Phil now has the potential to explore within this time constraint.

The film is also charmingly funny, and definitely offers plenty of great laughs. I especially love how Phil predicts even a gust of wind.

SPOILER AHEAD: I also enjoy how the film manages to reach a level of poignancy, and in the film's philosophical message of "live your life to the fullest" it doesn't just be this super-positive motivational message. Phil tries to help an old man who later dies, and discovers no matter what he does to try and help, the man passes away. "Sometimes people just die" says the nurse to Phil, and that scene spoke to me. Yes, we can make a difference in the world. We can be positive, help people, save lives, make people happy, but there are things we simply cannot alter. That is why I found that to be such an important scene and is one of the reasons the entire idea of the film works so well. It is funny, sometimes emotional and a classic in its own right.

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