Saturday, July 24, 2010

Saturday at the Movies #10 - Across The Pond
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Over the years, I have developed a soft spot for British movies. Not merely any movie filmed or set in England, or any movie having British people in it. Nope, movies made in the UK for UK audiences, that may or may not cross the pond. Since it has been said that the British do things differently, and while my YouTube searching skills are indeed legend, I haven't been able to find trailers for everything, but clips will suffice.

Gideon's Daughter - Bill Nighy (the British actor, not the American science guy) portrays Gideon Warner, a public relations genius whose private relations are at the other end of the spectrum. At odds with his newly adult daughter who seeks both his approval and her own independence, and tasked with the Herculean feat of spinning the millenium, Gideon doesn't count on love coming into the picture. Especially not in the form of a grieving mother whose marriage crumbled in the wake of an unspinnable tragedy.

Fan-made (not me)trailer:

and scene:

The Englishman Who Went Up a Hill but Came Down a Mountain - Long title, long clip, but a trailer could not do this story of post- WW1 Wales. Hugh Grant plays a land surveyor come to the village to verify that their one claim to fame, a mountain, is indeed that. He finds the object of his study to be a few inches short of the goal, but the populace bands together to distract the surveyor while they make up for their shortcoming. Truly delightful, atmopsheric and a truly inspiring ending. Extra points for Colm Meany and a plethora of ginger-haired babies.

The Girl in the Cafe - Bill Nighy portrays Lawrence, a man who has nothing at all in his life except his job as a civil servant. His job is his life, not because of grand passion, but because that's what he has. Everything goes by rote, until one fateful tea break when he shares a table with a stranger at the cafe near his office. Kelly MacDonald's Gina opens Lawrence to the fact that he has a heart at all, and his trembling, tentative blossoming is nothing short of art to watch. When Lawrence invites Gina as his guest to the G-8 summit on poverty, (Iceland being a perfect metaphor for Lawrence's life) both his professional and personal lives explode. The political message might have been handled more subtly, but the acting gets an A++++ and Lawrence's final dilemma can spark some interesting speculation.

Bright Young Things - The original 1980 miniseries of Brideshead Revisisted is probably my favorite movie ever ever ever, (okay, yes, technically miniseries, and it was on television, not in cinemas, but my blog so my rules and it counts)so when I found that another Evelyn Waugh novel had a movie treatment, I pounced on that sucker like a cat on catnip. Same result, too. Adapted from the novel Vile Bodies, we dive headfirst into a world both dazzling and desolate as we, along with the characters, spin wildly out of control in 1920s England. With Stephen Fry directing and a cast that includes James MacAvoy and David Tennant, this is one wild ride worth every minute.

Link to actual trailer here:

and scene:


Maria Louisa said...

LOVED Bright Young Things! Stephen Fry is and incredible actor/director. Have you every rented Wooster and Jeeves? Hugh Laurie and Stephen Fry do incredible justice to P.G. Wodehouse's inconic characters: The Upper Class Twit and his Every Wiser Man Friday. Great Fun! Methinks you may enjoy.

Anna Carrasco Bowling said...

Thanks, Maria Louisa. Stephen Fry did a fabulous job with this one.

I have not yet had the pleasure of Wooster and Jeeves, but that's certainly something to look into.