Friday, January 11, 2013

Hyde Park on Hudson

I mistakenly held onto this post because I was going to include a congratulations to Mr. Murry for his Oscar nomination. Silly me. Someone screwed up and they skipped right over him.  I just want to say that he was fantastic.  He did justice to FDR without slipping into a caricature.  His accent was fabulous and not too thick. Of course the only other FDR I can think of at present is the dude in Annie (which people tell me is a terrible movie but I love it anyway)  so I don't have much to compare him to.  Anywhoodle, here's my review.  It's brief because I'm bummed that it got no love from Oscar and when I'm bummed I tend to ramble.

So I think I've mentioned that Bill Murray and I dated for, like, 3 to 5 minutes, right?  Well we did.  My friend Debra, who I don't talk to anymore, was there and could totally confirm my claim.  It ended well and I still think of him quite fondly, which is why I was very excited to see his new film, Hyde Park on Hudson.

I think my one tiny complaint was a sense of overwhelming familiarity.  Even though I knew the character of King George VI (aka Bertie) was going to show up, I still managed to get an overall feel like I was watching a sequel to The King's Speech.  Not to take away from Hyde Park but there was just a feeling I had of been there, done that.  I'm guessing this can be attributed to time period and a sharing of characters but it still all seemed so familiar to me. 

So the film is mostly about President Franklin D. Roosevelt and his cousin/girlfriend, Daisy (played wonderfully by Laura Linney).  It's interesting to see how their relationship evolves from an awkward kinship to what I can only describe as a sister-wife situation. I don't want to spoil it for you but Daisy wasn't his only mistress.  It's an odd situation because he cares for them but mostly because he needed something different from each of them.  Sadly what it is he needs from each isn't really fleshed out but there may not have been time for that.  Instead they go into America's special relationship with England right before we got into World War II. 

I'm struggling to put my overall feeling into words. Yes, there were some story problems, perhaps, but I just really liked the movie.  Hyde Park was just a fun way to spend an hour and a half .  There wasn't anything too controversial (everyone knows Eleanor was a hipster feminist and that presidents got around) or earth-shattering but does there have to be?  It was pleasant and terribly funny (there's this whole thing about the King of England eating hot dogs that is just a joy to watch unfold) and that's all I really need from movies sometimes. 

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