Having read the reviews, I wasn't really sure what to expect when I began seeing GHTG. I should say that I have been a B&S fan since 1997 or 1998 when I discovered "If you're feeling sinister" and I have all their releases up until 1998 as well as the debut album of Gentle Waves. Their music has really influenced me as a person and I really was curious of what a film based on their songs would look like.
I felt happy watching GHTG but it was also really emotional. Being in my mid-30s it reminded me of my dreams as a teenager and I began asking myself if there's still time to accomplish them. I strongly identified with the character of James and his search for the perfect moment, which makes it impossible to enjoy life. I recognized Eve in the many talented, self-destructive, impulsive people I have met in my life and all the opportunities I had to make my life a little more interesting.
GHTG is full of color. The characters dress up in all kinds of costumes, and yes it is unrealistic but I think what many fail to realize is that our fondest memories are usually very different than what we really experienced. Everything is more colorful and stylish in our memories, like a Belle and Sebastian album cover.
I had read that there is no plot to the movie, but I don't agree at all. I think both Eve and James are wonderfully developed characters and Cassie is also an interesting character whose presence makes the story better. And the music is also wonderful. I was very pleased with Emily Browning's singing performance. She not only has a great voice but she also seemed to be really invested in the songs which made her character more believable.
I loved the film's bittersweet ending as well as the many funny and awkward moments (James fighting his drummer, James and Eve showing up at Cassie's house or the drunk Scottish boys whose accent Cassie couldn't understand). This may not be a film for everyone, but I think the world would be a better place if more people listened to Belle & Sebastian and all I can do is thank Stuart Murdoch, the actors and everyone else involved in making this film.