Mister Eclectic (howeird) wrote,
Mister Eclectic

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Calendar Girls

I confess. I rented this DVD because it was in Netflix's "unrated" section, and I fully expected a cheap, sleazy T&A fest with nubile nymphettes cavorting in some plot-less Hollywood excuse for soft porn.

Boy, was I disappointed.

If you have not seen this movie, drop everything and rent it immediately. Trust me.

Almost anything I say about this movie would be a spoiler, so this is going to be short. Acting: superb. Cinematography: even better. Writing: amazing. Directing: Very good, some minor discontinuity and some showboating, but generally solid. My only major complaint is the audio mixing was horrid - I had to turn on subtitles to hear the actors over the way too loud background music, and the song selection seemed to have been done at random. However, the choral direction and chorus was excellent. Thirty-seven repetitions of William Blake's Jerusalem set to hymn music never got old. And I hatehatehate hymns, so that's saying a lot. All through the film, I kept wondering where I had seen the main character (Helen Mirren) and looking at her pages on imdb, the answer is "everywhere".

Don't miss the deleted scenes, and save the "Naked Truth" featurette for last.

On a tangent, I found the poem Jerusalem downright absurd, having been in that city often, and England a couple of times:

And did those feet in ancient time
Walk upon England's mountains green?
And was the holy Lamb of God
On England's pleasant pastures seen?

And did the Countenance Divine
Shine forth upon our clouded hills?
And was Jerusalem builded here
Among these dark Satanic mills?

Bring me my bow of burning gold:
Bring me my arrows of desire:
Bring me my spear: O clouds unfold!
Bring me my chariot of fire.

I will not cease from mental fight,
Nor shall my sword sleep in my hand
Till we have built Jerusalem
In England's green and pleasant land


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