Meryl, how we love thee: Florence Foster Jenkins

“From acclaimed director Stephen Frears (Philomena, The Queen), Meryl Streep stars in the true story of Florence Foster Jenkins, a New York heiress and socialite who obsessively pursued her dream of becoming a great singer. Convinced of her own talent, the voice Florence heard in her head was beautiful, while to everyone else it was hilarious and awful. Her husband and mFFJ_Poster.jpganager, aristocratic English actor St Clair Bayfield (Hugh Grant), was determined to protect his beloved from the truth. But when Florence decided to give a public concert at Carnegie Hall in 1944, St Clair knew he faced his greatest challenge yet. Funny, moving and featuring a brilliant lead performance by Meryl Streep, Florence Foster Jenkins is as exuberant and charming as the irrepressible diva who inspired the film.”

It was with glee that my movie buddy and I sank into the red plush seats to watch Florence Foster Jenkins. This was one we had been waiting to see for weeks. After all, bad singing can be very funny if its done right … and Meryl can do no wrong.

FFJ

earplugs supplied

This movie is a true story (yes TRUE) about a wealthy socialite who believes she can sing like an angel. She does sing, just not in tune. And the people around her go to extraordinary lengths to make sure she never finds this out.

 

 

 

Check out her pianist (Simon Helberg aka ‘Howard from The Big Bang Theory’) as he discovers the diva he has been hired to play for can’t hit a note…

 

Their facial expressions!

It would have been easy to make this story one dimensional, a long running ‘she can’t sing’ gag. But the movie sneaks up on you. It works on different levels and slaps you every now and then, right in the chuckles.

Highlights

  • Meryl, of course.
  • The fact that its a true story. Later there were others, like Mrs Miller, but Florence was the first.
  • Brilliant costumes. The entire Wardrobe department deserves an award.
  • The casting of Hugh Grant with a woman close to his own age (umm, sort of).

Lowlights

  • It finished. We could have watched it all over again.

 

I keep catching myself smiling as I remember facial expressions, the singing, and of course Meryl. A good movie will do that to you.

Liz xx

 

Official trailer:

 

And a cool featurette:

 

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