Groundhog Day

Groundhog Day ★★★★½

“I was in the Virgin Islands once. I met a girl. We ate lobster, drank piña coladas. At sunset, we made love like sea otters. That was a pretty good day. Why couldn’t I get that day over, and over, and over...”

Hilarious and uplifting, Groundhog Day is a shining example of how far creativity and clever writing can boost a brilliant concept. As far as comedies go, this film is of the highest quality within its genre and timeless within the entire medium. Using inventive comedy that balances essentially all primary types of humor, each new element added to what could’ve easily been a repetive chore is more than enough to remain fresh and engaging.

Bill Murray clearly gives this role his best effort, translating to one of his greatest performances. His development from complete jerk to genuine lover feels natural due to the tight pacing, which allows for a good mix of morbidity, hilarity, and his attempts at romance. Clever writing allows us to understand almost everything he’s learned in this time warp without needing to see it all. His actions and his attitude leave space for room to tackle themes ranging from depression to sexuality to congeniality.

Phil Connors’s break from the mundane mold of daily life and the impact of straying from such can teach us a precious lesson. By falling into uninspired routine, we trade away valuable developments that would allow us to grow. We live through learning. You don’t want to be one to have to reflect on your recent actions when asked, what if “nothing that you did mattered?” Groundhog Day is an incredibly fine allegory that’s full of imagination, laughs, and harrowing close-ups of alarm clocks. It’s also one of my personal favorite comedies.

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