Currently browsing the "Gemma Arterton" tag.

Review: Summerland

Set mostly during World War II, Summerland takes place on the beautiful and remote southern coast of England. Misanthropic writer Alice (Gemma Arterton, Vita & Virginia, Tamara Drewe) lives in a small village where the kids think she’s a witch, and the rest of the villagers leave her a wide berth. She’s fine with that since she’s hard at work writing while pining away for the loss of her one great love. Then one day she opens her door and a young boy named Frank (Lucas Bond) is there – an evacuee from London who expects to live with her. To say she’s reluctant to take him in would be a gross understatement. But of course she does and little by little they grow to care about one other. It’s a pretty familiar story, and it feels a bit like an episode of one of your favorite BBC series. But it’s also a pleasant, heart-warming diversion we can lose ourselves in for a time during this virus obsessed period.

Review: Vita & Virginia

Vita Sackville-West was a British socialite and a popular writer in the 1920s. She was also fond of scandalizing the society in which she lived, especially with her female lovers. Virginia Woolf was also a writer at the time, though less popular, but Lady Sackville-West set her sights on her after meeting at a dinner party. What followed was a relationship that lasted a decade and was responsible for one of Woolf’s greatest books, “Orlando.” Vita & Virginia is the story of these two women as they come together passionately for a while and then remain friends for a while. The film feels a lot like the lost lesbian episode of Downton Abbey, and while the performances are quite good, the costumes gorgeous, and the sets to die for, this telling of the famous literary romance does leave you less than satisfied and wishing Julian Fellowes had had a hand in it.

Unfinished Song

Unfinished Song isn’t exactly a comedy – unless, perhaps, you’re comparing it to the likes of Amour. Then sure, it’s a hoot. The film tackles a rather sensitive subject – death – with poignancy and humor and a heavy dose of melancholy. So let’s call it what it is – a melanchomedy. It’s a slow, sweet and funny indie in the vein of a Quartet or Best Exotic Marigold Hotel.

Tamara Drewe

Stephen Frears has directed quite a few big budget, star-studded hits like Dangerous Liaisons, The Queen, High Fidelity, and The Grifters. And in between he keeps busy with smaller, somewhat quirkier films like Tamara Drewe. What remains the same in all is that he has a fantastic sense of character. In Tamara Drewe, the title character Tamara (Gemma Arterton), a beautiful London journalist, returns to her tiny home village in Dorset to get her recently deceased Mum’s house ready to put on the market and brings some much needed excitement to the sleepy burg.