Thursday, February 18, 2010

let's misbehave

I caught Easy Virtue on cable the other night. Another little gem, a la Miss Pettigrew. It isn't exactly surprising that a period comedy with Colin Firth and Kristin Scott Thomas should be fun to watch. What is a very pleasant discovery is Jessica Biel, who easily inhabits the heroine and owns the movie. I haven't seen her in much (The Illusionist) before, but I will be keeping an eye out for her in future.

The other thing the movie slyly does is re-arrange more recent music (Sex Bomb, Car Wash) in the style of the post WWI period, mixing it with more contemporary-to-the-period tunes like Let's Misbehave and they work perfectly. It's almost a musical at times.

At first the mood seems comedy, with some very funny and acerbic scenes, but there is an undercurrent of unease, much like the almost shell-shocked malaise of Colin Firth's character. Growing up in the post-Viet Nam era, I have heard many tragic stories of GIs coming home disillusioned with their country after that experience. What we tend to forget is that all wars are hell, and the people who lived through post WW1 dealt with many of the same issues. Life was not easy for rich or poor, British or American.

The overall result of watching this film is not melancholy however. You will remember the characters and their stories may ring true and even deeply in some cases, but it is also quite fun. If you get a chance, don't miss it.


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