36. Groundhog Day (1993)

Could watch it again and again

Directed by: Harold Ramis
Written by: Danny Rubin, Harold Ramis
Starring: Bill Murray, Andie MacDowell and Chris Elliott

Everyday should be Groundhog Day if it ends like this.

Waking up on the same day over and over again is anybody’s worst nightmare. For weatherman Phil (Murray), living the same day in a small insignificant town and covering a story about a weather-forcasting groundhog over and over again, is enough to desire suicide.

Groundhog Day opens like any other goofy 90’s comedy –  predicting eye-rolling exaggeration and a pretty standard, if not, predictable plot blowing in from the days of big hair and daggy jeans. But while we may think we know how Groundhog Day will turn out, surprising jumps in plot and darkly humorous moments lift this potentially mediocre movie into exciting possibilities that are realized in heartwarming ideas concerning how important it is to appreciate the people around you and how much you can change your own life with your actions.

The development of Phil as a character also works well in being more than just a mere caricature of grumpy self-centredness that magically transforms into a caring, loving person as we might expect. The challenges that Phil faces are given a comical and bizarre quality that feels naturally in tune with the kind of person he is and therefore doesn’t feel artificial or ingenuine when he undergoes change – something that most comedies nowadays feel they can simply look over.

So while Groundhog Day is all about repetition, this charming comedy proves that surprises can come in the least expected places, making it possible to enjoy over and over again.


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