It’s been a while since Alan Rickman left us. I miss him and all the wonderful movies he would have done. So much so that I have a new word for you to add to your vocabulary. It is alan-rickman-esque. It means: it’s not what he said, it’s how he delivered the words. Who else could deliver the line: “Call off Christmas” as Alan Rickman did in “Robin Hood, Prince of Thieves” and get away with it? Who else could play Marvin the Robot in “A Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy”?
I first came to appreciate Alan Rickman’s alan-rickman-esque charm when he played Professor Snape in the Harry Potters. I liked Mr. Rickman so much I started rooting for Snape. Just the way he said “Harry Potter” would have me in stitches. Not even Tim Curry could do that, and Tim Curry does have a certain alan-rickman-esque quality about him.
When I am having a really bad day, I ask the universe, “Where’s Alan Rickman when I need him?” So you can imagine my delight when I discovered the movie “Bottle Shock”. It could have been a dark and stormy night, and I would have watched it. I could have been the best of times or the worst of times, and I would have watched it. You could just call me Ishmael, and I still would have watched it. The genius, the greatest English actor of his time without an Academy Award, was in this movie.
On top of that, it’s about wine. California wine, that is. When was the last time you saw a movie about wine? They don’t make movies about wine, now do they? I did a google search and didn’t find many.There’s Eric Rohmer’s “Autumn Tale (which is unavailable in the U.S.), “Sideways” (nominated for an Oscar for Best Picture), “The Secret of Santa Vittoria” with Anthony Quinn playing an Italian and “Year of the Comet” with the wonderful Penelope Ann Miller. There are a couple of horror films and three with big stars, but not recommendable. Most are documentaries. Only goes to show you how hard it is to make a good movie about wine. “Bottle Shock” is a good movie about wine. Napa wines, to be exact.
There’s three things that are for sure. Forty-two is the answer. It’s a long way to temporary. And, if you are looking for an alan-rickman-esque performance, Alan Rickman is your man. In “Bottle Shock”, he is exerting that alan-rickman-esque-ness of an answer to this question, “Why don’t I like you?”: “You think I’m an asshole. And I’m not really. I’m just British…and well, you’re not.”
By the way, according to Dr. Vinny of the Wine Spectator, “‘Bottle shock’ or ‘bottle sickness’ are terms used to describe a temporary condition in a wine where its flavors are muted or disjointed. There are two main scenarios when bottle shock sets in: either right after bottling, or when wines (especially fragile older wines) are shaken in travel.”
So pour yourself a glass of chardonnay and slice yourself some cheese. Then sit yourself down and have an enjoyable good time watching the very original alan-rickman-esque actor, Alan Rickman, in “Bottle Shock”. There’s a lot worse ways to spend an evening.