Groundhog Day Reviews
Even though the premise had the potential and sometimes it does wander off on dark tracks the maker picks the smart approach on narrowing down the complexity to light and breezy tone that is mildly soothing and satisfying. Harold Ramis could have done some better work in it along with editing the screenplay a bit tighter too; around 90 minutes would have been adequate. Bill Murray is excellent as the protagonist in this fantasy and he pulls it off all alone in his shoulder with head held high and doing some of his career's finest work. Groundhog Day is a beautiful feature that explores the innocence and priorities of human nature by projecting some dark and practical work on screen that is supported by stellar performances.
Yes, Phil Connors, famous weatherman, is reliving the same Groundhog Day over and over again in a town that he hates. His ensuing failures and successes of handling the same day repeatedly give you multiple reasons to laugh repeatedly. Unlike a number of comedies, the film is a great on a number of levels, layered with both solid character development and a heartwarming message. Self-centered Phil learns the importance of what it means to live each day to the fullest. Of course it doesn't hit him right away, but I imagine we would react similarly if put in his shoes. Phil experiences a gauntlet of emotions including disbelief, despair, relief, and invigoration.
And that's exactly where its power lies. While it's a film with a premise mired in fantasy, Groundhog Day fully and completely represents our realities as human beings and how we choose to shape those realities. Classic film. I give it a 90.