Julia Roberts plays a woman unsatisfied with her life. Rather than subscribe to the American way of marriage, parenthood, suburban living, and debt, she decides she wants to travel and see the world. So she divorces her husband, played by Billy Crudup, and embarks to eat her way through Italy, pray her way through India, and love her way through Bali. Along the way, she interacts with James Franco, Richard Jenkins, and Javier Bardem.
Most everything you need to know about this movie you get from the title. And at 2 hours and 13 minutes, it’s just too long. As much as I like James Franco, you could easily cut out his entire part of the film and it wouldn’t affect the storyline one bit. In fact, it would improve it.
The draw of a movie like this would be to live vicariously through Roberts’ character, doing all the things you’ve always secretly wanted to do and gaining some sort of spiritual insight into your own life. But I really wasn’t envious or enlightened by her journey at all. The eating didn’t make me hungry. The praying didn’t make me pious. And the loving didn’t make me amorous. And I didn’t care for Roberts’ character at all actually. In fact, I found her quite self-absorbed. Richard Jenkins (who finally got some long deserved attention in ‘The Visitor’) provides the best and most poignant segment of the film, but other than his small supporting part, I just wasn’t pulled in. For me, ‘Eat Pray Love’ was more like ‘Yawn Doze Sleep’.