Friday, June 9, 2017

Florence Foster Jenkins (2016)

Florence Foster Jenkins (2016): based on a true story; written by Nicholas Martin; directed by Stephen Frears; starring Meryl Streep (Florence Foster Jenkins), Hugh Grant (St Clair Bayfield), Simon Helberg (Cosme McMoon), and Rebecca Ferguson (Kathleen): Delightful comic drama about the world's worst singer, New York socialite and philanthropist Florence Foster Jenkins. She thinks she can sing. Husband Hugh Grant humours her because he loves her. Actually, pretty much everyone humours her because she's a nice person who throws a lot of money around. 

This movie isn't quite the laugh riot it was advertised as -- it's also a bittersweet movie about folly and sacrifice. The cast is terrific throughout, Stephen Frears directs with unforced elegance, and the singing... boy oh boy that singing. Meryl Streep nails Jenkins' dementedly above-range 'coloratura,' as recordings of the actual singer played under the end credits demonstrate. Recommended.

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