Fri, 08 Oct 2010 12:31:58 GMT

Review: 'Eat Pray Love'

Eat Pray Love

'Eat Pray Love' does exactly what it should to satisfy its core audience: It provides a gorgeous escape which looks exquisitely photographed and is full of female wish fulfillment. Yet it also offers sufficient emotional heft and self-discovery to make you feel as if you've actually learned something and, perhaps, emerged a better person solely through osmosis.

It's easy to see why author Elizabeth Gilbert's memoir became an international phenomenon, even without help from Oprah. Everyone's looking for something, for answers, for their true and higher purpose, and Gilbert had the fortitude (and the wherewithal) to take off alone on a journey around the world to find herself after her divorce.

Having Julia Roberts star as Liz Gilbert in the film version of the best-seller, in theory, only makes it more appealing to an even wider audience. Roberts is radiant as ever, and director and co-writer Ryan Murphy's adaptation allows her to show off her full range with plenty of hardcore hanky moments. Not unlike the production numbers in Murphy's juggernaut TV series 'Glee', the search for meaning in 'Eat Pray Love' is played with complete earnestness. But even cynics viewing this movie (or the vast majority of men) would find it hard not to be impressed by the lush visuals and, on a more substantive level, moved by some of the performances.

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