We found this a feel-good film that tied up several loose ends from the television series, with a happy ever after ending. It was not a deep film, but pleasant with some great costuming and picture of the cars and the era (it was set in the late 1920s). A favourite character was the one played by Maggie Smith – a classic quote from her was “I don’t argue, I inform”. Others also appreciated the cook – Mrs Patmore played by Lesley Nicol – a down to earth well-rounded character. The film included a homosexual relationship which some critics found unnecessary (stating is was influenced by the ‘liberal left’) and could not see why it was included. In discussing this view we decided that it was relevant as it tied up the loose end around one of the characters – Barrow whose character had developed from a nasty schemer to a man who eventually found himself.
The class generally agreed on a rating between 3 and 4 out of 5.
Several class members had also seen “Ride Like a Girl” – the story of Michelle Paine’s battles to end up as the first female jockey to win the Melbourne Cup. We found the family story amazing – a single father bringing up 10 children. Michelle’s persistence in the face of the many barriers she met was seen by some as inspirational. The rating was again mixed but was generally around 4 out of 5.
Our film for discussion in December is “Judy”. This is about Judy Garland and according to the web site Rotten Tomatoes, “Led by a deeply committed performance from Renée Zellweger, Judy captures the waning days of a beloved performer with clear-eyed compassion.” For those of us who saw or heard Judy Garland in our younger days it could be an interesting film to view.