Although this comedy-drama seems to have been written specifically to give Meryl Streep a chance to dress up and put on a silly show, it's actually all true. And it's hugely entertaining, generating gut-wrenching laughter and some sharply resonant emotions too. It's also a subtle exploration of pop culture, most notably privileged artists and the fact that there's more to stardom than just talent.
Streep shines as Florence, a socialite who hosts lavish parties in 1944 New York with her husband St Clair (Hugh Grant). Both of them are frustrated artists: Florence sees herself as an opera diva, while St Clair never quite made it as an actor. So at her parties, Florence puts on performances for her friends, oblivious to the fact that she's riotously off-key, while St Clair plays the doting husband, protecting her from criticism and hiring talented young pianist Cosme McMoon (Simon Helberg) as her accompanist. Florence doesn't really mind that St Clair has a woman (Rebecca Ferguson) on the side. But when she books Carnegie Hall to perform a concert for troops returning from Europe, St Clair realises that he can't protect her from a real audience.
Writer Nicholas Martin and director Stephen Frears construct the story beautifully, building up to reveal Florence's voice in a painfully hilarious sequence that's expertly played by Streep, Grant and Helberg. Streep's enjoyment of the role is infectious, and she makes Florence sympathetic by letting us see her yearning to sing. She imagines she sounds like her operatic idols, so can't hear the strangled notes coming from her mouth. And those who don't applaud are laughing so heartily that surely they're just as entertained. Streep's performance soars through the performance scenes, but is just as powerful in the comedy and at moments when Florence is vulnerable and nervous.
Continue reading: Florence Foster Jenkins Review
The shows Florence Foster Jenkins put on were true spectacles but there were only a modest few who were privileged enough to witness them. The American socialite wasn't exactly given a natural gift to sing, but that wasn't going to put her off her ambition to appear on the same stages as some of the best operatic voices of her time.
Her ever-loving second husband was always on her side to give her the support to fulfil said dream.
In recent years Meryl Streep has appears in many films including Ricki and the Flash, Into the Woods and Mama Mia which all include musical scenes which she must showcase her vocal abilities, now she must take on a completely different approach in order to sufficiently mimic Foster Florence Jenkins' unique voice.
Florence Foster Jenkins was never what you might call a 'naturally' talented opera singer, however she had a remarkable talent for entertaining crowds. Most opera singers are trained from a young age but without her father's help (which he refused) Florence was unable to raise the funds to support her dream.
After her father's death, Florence found herself heir to enough money to begin a quest to fulfil her dream. She set up her own club and became a member of many social groups. Her live shows became renowned but she would never make her appearances public. Each of her shows had a strict guest list, with Florence deciding exactly who would get the tickets.
With the help of her husband St. Clair Bayfield, in 1944 at the age of 76, Florence finally decided that it was time to take up a new challenge and perform to her biggest crowd to date at Carnegie Hall.
"All the world's a stage, and the men and women merely players". Or so thinks Simon Axler (Al Pacino), a washed up aged actor who struggles to distinguish real life from the stage. With no money and all but no dignity left, his agent is desperate to help him get a new job advertising. Then he meets Pegeen (Greta Gerwig), the daughter of a close friend. As his flirtation is returned, Simon is more than confused to discover that Pegeen is a lesbian. Through a web of hilarious deception, Simon is warned to stay away, yet his odd relationship with Pegeen blossoms into something both self-destructive and moving.
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Conor (James McAvoy) and Eleanor (Jessica Chastain) play a couple who fall in love and get married, before hitting various hiccups in their relationship. However, this film is far from the clichéd love story, and instead tells the tale from both points of view, as well as relatable and engaging look at the relationship of two people still trying to figure out who the other person truly is. The Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby charts the highs and lows in a relationship between two people trying to recreate the past, so as not to let their love fade away.
Tommy and Rosie are a young couple living in New York who are madly in love with one another - mad enough that they begin to pull off the most dangerous heists possible in order to make enough money to start a life together after their stints in prison. While Rosie attempts to make an honest living as a debt collector, Tommy is hell-bent on revenge after watching his father get beaten to a pulp by the Mafia when he was just a child. He follows a court trial of mobster Sammy 'The Bull' Gravano whose information in court about his recent exploits present Tommy with an idea to rob the gang's No-Guns social club with Rosie as the getaway driver. After getting away with it without a hit contract, they continue to rob the mob before discovering an important piece of inside information that could permanently bring down the world's most formidable criminals.
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Josh Kovacs has been a resident in Queens for more than ten years; in that time, he has acquired and lived in one of New York City's most secured and lavish apartments. He works for the Wall Street billionaire Arthur Shaw, who just so happens to live above Josh, in a swanky penthouse flat, making him the wealthiest resident there.
One day, Arthur is convicted of stealing two billion dollars from his investors and he is placed under house arrest. The investors he stole from turn out to be Josh and his crew; Arthur has taken their pensions that they entrusted him to manage. Josh is forced to admit that his retirement fund was taken too.
Josh and his crew form a plan to take back their pension fund, which they think is hidden in Arthur's penthouse. They call upon a petty robber, Slide, to help them, who in turn hires his team of amateur thieves, to scout the penthouse. It turns out that the crooks know the layout of that particular apartment, so taking the two billion back should be a cinch, right?
Starring: Ben Stiller, Eddie Murphy, Matthew Broderick, Casey Affleck, Tea Leoni, Michael Pena, Gabourey Sidibe, Alan Alda, Nina Arianda, Judd Hirsch and Marcia Jean Kurtz
Gil and Inez are young couple who decide to travel to France with Inez's family. Gil is a very successful screenwriter in Hollywood and when he announces to Inez that he wishes to write his debut novel, she's supportive bu not exactly taken with the idea. When the opportunity to visit Paris arises, both Inez and Gil - who's had a fascination with the city for many years-, feel it's a perfect vacation.
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Although this comedy-drama seems to have been written specifically to give Meryl Streep a chance...
The shows Florence Foster Jenkins put on were true spectacles but there were only a...
Florence Foster Jenkins was never what you might call a 'naturally' talented opera singer, however...
"All the world's a stage, and the men and women merely players". Or so thinks...
Conor (James McAvoy) and Eleanor (Jessica Chastain) play a couple who fall in love and...