Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Notes on a Scandal

Judi Dench was great. Bill Nighy was great. They almost made me believe that this movie was worth watching. Almost. How ridiculous is this movie? As SHR commented, it felt like a made for Lifetime movie. It kind of felt like Single White Female but with Oscar cred. Or try to imagine Fatal Attraction with an old lesbian instead of Glenn Close and art teachers fucking a 15-year-old by the train tracks instead of boiling rabbits.

It was fun watching this movie and trying to figure out which scene will be shown during the Oscars when Dench and Blanchett's nominations are announced. My bet is the scene where Blanchett accuses Dench of the whole stealing a strand of her hair scene. Or it could be the one where Dench freaks out because Blanchett won't skip her son's (with Down Syndrome no less) middle school acting debut to console her about her dying cat.

There are at least three different movie ideas floating around in this one uneven film. Nighy was so damn good, I'd have been more interested in watching a movie about his and Blanchett's faltering marriage. Or how about focusing in on the aftermath of what happens to Blanchett's family after her affair is found out? Or even more about Dench's character? Instead, we got a 1991 by the numbers thriller playing dressup in Oscar's clothes.

And now annoying was that overbearing Philip Glass score? I kept thinking that the camera was going to pan back to a London nightscape, the film was going to speed up, and we were going to be treated to a 2006 version of Koyaanisqatsi.

Stone Groove said he liked the movie though because it reminded him of his affair with the hot teacher (who was dating Burt Reynolds at the time) at his school when he was 15.

Directed by Richard Eyre
AFI Theater - Silver Spring


mas said...

Stone Groove: Wow.

weasel said...

It's that over-rated Patrick Marber's fault, I suspect. The book was pretty good, so I imagine he buggered about with the screenplay. Still, not bad work for a man who used to play the foil to Alan Partridge.

Of course I haven't seen it yet, but I will just for some hot Dame Judy action.

As for Stone Groove- this just adds to my Chuck Barris theory.

Chris Larry said...

I sat through the long form trailer of this movie twice and knew it was a steaming pile of hoopla. It was like they took everything I wouldnt want to see in a movie and made one movie...lame to the max. I agree if it was lesser actors this would be Court Street explotaion fair and no one would go....

I do dig the male actor though, whats his name...have you seen the made for HBO movie with him as a world hunger advocate?

Listmaker said...

bill nighy. he was ineed great.

i had no interest in seeing this movie but when in silver spring, do as the silver springers do.

msdee said...

I thought Bill Nighy's performance was hammy. He bopped his head so much when he yelled I thought it was going to fall off. I just saw this movie and left a comment on Weasels blog describign it as a Lifetime movie also! must be a girl thing. I had to say Lifetime only because the subject of the movie was a wee bit too controversial for an afterschool special something titled Why Billy got an "A" or something like that.
I love Judi Dench even in minor silly roles like "The chronicles of Riddick" but she creeped me out in this movie.