Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Stranger than Fiction

Josh and I watched Stranger than Fiction on DVD this weekend, and while I enjoyed the movie, I was distracted by all of the setting inconsistencies. I think I was driving Josh nuts with my observations since he was much more irritated by the film's supposed plot holes, but heck, what's my blog for if I can't air a few grievances?

So here we go. The movie was obviously shot in Chicago, but no references are made to Chicago...just "this city." Will Ferrell catches a CTA bus every day, but he says to a fellow rider, "Don't you just love the MTA?" He uses a pay phone in the "6th street station," which appears to be under Daley Plaza. I'm pretty sure it was the Jackson tunnel; there's definitely no 6th street downtown. And I'm pretty sure the IRS doesn't have a major office in Chicago anyway. We send our returns to St. Louis.

What else? Ferrell takes the bus to Euclid Avenue, which is west of the city--a very long bus ride from what looked to be Michigan Avenue. Emma Thompson's character, the author who is narrating Farrell's life, appears to have a studio overlooking the State Street Sears store (not likely), and Farrell's hospital room has a magnificent view of the Wrigley Building--something you can't see from Northwestern Memorial Hospital. Maybe he was recovering at Swissotel?

Amped, the guitar shop where Ferrell buys a Stratocaster appeared to be located in the financial district (um, maybe Wicker Park or Lincoln Square would be more likely). And then there's the professor played by Dustin Hoffman. I'm quite confident his scenes were shot at the modernist concrete creation that is University of Illinois Chicago, but no signs or flags identified the school.