A widow in 1930s London decides to buy and run a musical theatre.
This review contains plot spoilers, and the movie wasn’t good enough to write a second one, so you have been warned.
We really really wanted to like this movie. We heard pretty good things about it, the story behind it was interesting, and Bob Hoskins (an Otter Family Favorite Actor), Judy Dench and Christopher Guest are in it.
We really, really wanted to like it.
But we couldn’t.
The story is about this widow who buys a theatre, starts a successful 24 hour musical theatre, then adds live nudity on stage (approved only if the girls do not move, so they stand in tableaux while musical numbers happen on the stage in front of and around them).
Sounds good, especially when WWII starts and London is bombed and things get dangerous and difficult….you’d think it’d be a great movie.
Well, it should have been…but it wasn’t. The story was good, but most of the actors are wooden. Bob Hoskins was wonderful, and a joy to watch. Judy Dench played a difficult and aggravating woman, and played her well, but you couldn’t like her or cheer for her…and the rest of the actors, the chorus girls, the dancers…they had no spirit, no oomph…they all just got on the stage and did their stuff, but none of them seemed to have any energy.
(SPOILER) And the lovely rising star lead singer who doesn’t want to date the boys, is trapped into it by Dench, gets pregnant and gets dumped, THEN is killed by a bomb, oh give me a break. Far from caring about her or being sad, we were just rolling our eyes at the whole thing.
Sure, there were some funny scenes. And there were some good bits of dialogue. Of course Christopher Guest was wonderful, he always is. But the parts did not make a complete and interesting whole.
This one is a renter, don’t pay to see it in the theatres. And you know, if it slips off the bottom of your rental list…you haven’t really missed much.