Wednesday, December 29, 2004

De-Lovely 

This look into the life and complicated relationship of Cole Porter and his wife, Linda Lee Porter, takes place in the form of Cole sitting in an empty theater with the "director" Gabe and looking back through his life. De-Lovely overall is a fabulous movie, but I found the first 15-30 minutes a little shallow and the characters difficult to care about. Once the Porters move from Venice to New York, however, the story and the characters begin to come through, and by the end The Girl and I were completely entranced.

Cole Porter (Kevin Kline) was an emphatically gay man who fell madly in love with the lovely Linda Lee. She loved him madly in return, with full knowledge that theirs wouldn't be a particularly exclusive or physical marriage. At times Cole's extramarital activities went beyond what Linda could accept, and Ashley Judd conveys her depth of emotional turmoil with a wondrous skill.

A bevy of musical guests perform some of Porter's songs, and I think I'll be picking up this soundtrack this weekend as well. My favorites were Elvis Costello ("Let's Misbehave"), Alanis Morissette ("Let's Do It, Let's Fall in Love"), Sheryl Crow ("Begin the Beguine") and Natalie Cole ("Ev'ry Time You Say Goodbye"). I was quietly crying all through "Ev'ry Time You Say Goodbye," and when the whole cast of characters, led by Jonathan Pryce as Gabe, belted out "Blow Gabriel, Blow" I was sobbing, complete with gasps for air.

Reality Check: Granted, I'm a sap for musicals and The Girl really, really isn't, but she was right there grabbing the Kleenex with me.




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Posted by Beth Henderson at 1:02 PM