Groundhog Day Recut from Rita's Perspective Looks a Lot Different
To most people, Groundhog Day is a treasured comedy that features one of Bill Murray’s finest performances. To others, it’s a metaphor for all kinds of deeper ways of thinking, from Buddhism to psychoanalysis. Now, Vimeo user IsItModern? has given fans a whole new way to experience the Harold Ramis classic: Rewatch it from the perspective of Andie MacDowell’s character Rita.
As Randall Colburn at The A.V. Club writes:
“Andie MacDowell’s Rita … meets Phil on the eve of Groundhog Day. Their first encounter—a long car ride to Punxsutawney—confronts her with an egotistical jerk with no desire for acquaintanceship. But, since the next day unfolds countless times, we watch her and Phil get to know each other in sequences that run the gamut from cute to cruel to genuinely romantic. For Phil, their love story is believable because, over the course of those many, many days, she changes him for the better.
“But Rita doesn’t remember those days. She remembers the one that breaks the loop, the one that epitomizes Phil’s transformation from nihilistic jerk to empathetic do-gooder.”
In other words: If you look at the film from Rita’s perspective, she really only gets to know Phil over the course of a few hours—and though the Phil she gets is the charming “after” version that all of Punxsutawney loves, his creepy way of knowing just exactly what to say and do, not to mention his premature declarations of love, would likely have her climbing into the groundhog's hole to get away from this stage-five clinger. Then again, they don’t call it a Hollywood ending for nothing.
[h/t: The A.V. Club]