Will we ever get over Sideways? I mean the collective we not the literal. I still hear people talking about Sideways or even ask… what was that movie….?
It was an amusing film but not one that is endlessly quotable. The anti-Merlot stance interesting and mostly puzzling shows how influential this movie was for a marked decline in Merlot in the US. Miles Raymond (played by Paul Giamatti) protagonist, adores Chateau Cheval Blanc and is dismayed by Merlot though Merlot is a part of Chateau Cheval Blanc. Trefethen displayed a sign on highway 29 “Clearly, Miles had not yet tasted Napa Valley Merlot.” Pinot Noir took a more central focus and Merlot clearly a decline. Sideways received five Academy Award nominations and out of that one win – best writing (adapted screenplay)–Sideways was a surprised hit and box office sales of about 105 million dollars. Pinot Noir was bound to rise with so many eyes on this film and Merlot’s decline can be questioned if it was the movie that solely had that much influence. I do think Merlot’s decline was due more to the popularization of Malbec at Merlots expense. If Miles’ character was so influential –isn’t it a bit scary that a fictional character could be so influential in the wine world?
The Hitching Post restaurant still has a reference and picture of Sideways and a bit of copy talking about how Maya (Jack’s love interest) played by Sandra Oh is a waitress here.
I do think there is a great desire to find a film whose centering is both comical and relatable and yet the only source material is Sideways. Few films can find such a close category relationship. There is no doubt more interest in wine in the US now than at any other time before. I do think another film about wine where like Sideways it can be a central focus in addition to a creative and humorous storyline. And in time we can let a new movie take central stage and perhaps we can move forward.
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