A weekly feature from from ctvnews.ca! The Crouse Review is a quick, hot take on the weekend’s biggest movies! This week Richard looks at “Solo: A Star Wars Story,” an awkward wedding night in “On Chesil Beach” starring Saoirse Ronan and a documentary on one of fashion’s leading figures, “The Gospel According to Andre.”
Richard joins CP24 anchor Nathan Downer to have a look at the weekend’s new movies including “Solo: A Star Wars Story,” an awkward wedding night in “On Chesil Beach” starring Saoirse Ronan, “Birthmarked” with Toni Collette and Mathew Goode and a documentary on one of fashion’s leading figures, “The Gospel According to Andre.”
Richard sits in with CTV NewsChannel anchor Marcia MacMillan to have a look at the weekend’s big releases, “Solo: A Star Wars Story,” an awkward wedding night in “On Chesil Beach” starring Saoirse Ronan and a documentary on one of fashion’s leading figures, “The Gospel According to Andre.”
Adapted by Ian McEwan from his novel of the same name, “On Chesil Beach,” spends some up-close-and-personal time with an awkward young couple on their wedding night.
It’s the summer of 1962 and Saoirse Ronan is Florence Ponting, a straight-laced,
upper class musician with dreams of playing with an orchestra. University College of London history student Edward Mayhew (Billy Howle) is working class, but despite their different stations in life, woos her and soon the pair is married.
We meet them on their honeymoon in a hotel on Chesil Beach, Dorset. Their obvious affection for one another aside, they are inexperienced and anxious. Edward is eager but Florence is torn between her distaste of personal intimacy and her fear of disappointing her new husband. “You’re always advancing and I am always backing away,” she says, “and we can never talk about it.”
Through flashbacks from their lives, both separately and together, we learn of Edward’s difficult home life with a mentally ill mother (Anne-Marie Duff) and what makes them both tick.
“On Chesil Beach” is essentially a chamber piece, built around the two lead performances. Director Dominic Cooke takes full advantage of them, luxuriating over their faces, letting their eyes, rather than the dialogue tell the story. Once again, Ronan is remarkable, authentic in every way. Howle contrasts Florence’s calm presence with a more volatile presence. From flashbacks to happier times and their their eventful honeymoon to a flashforward, we see a couple slowly crushed by the emotional weight of their circumstances.
Despite the emotional heaviness the film is light on its feet, only becoming bogged down in an overly sentimental—and tacked on feeling—coda.
Richard sits in on the CJAD Montreal morning show host Andrew Carter to talk about the origins of one of the most famous characters in movie history in “Solo: A Star Wars Story,” an awkward wedding night in “On Chesil Beach” starring Saoirse Ronan and a documentary on one of fashion’s leading figures, “The Gospel According to Andre.”
For many of us Queen Elizabeth is a face on a stamp, someone we see every day on our money. For Sarah Gadon, the Canadian actress who plays H.R.H. in A Royal Night Out, the figurehead is “an icon and it is really always kind of difficult to humanize someone who is embalmed in icon status.”
The Dracula Untold star plays the Queen before she took the throne, when she was a 20-year-old headstrong woman known to friends as Lillibet. It’s May 8, 1945, VE Day in England, the biggest party London has ever seen and Princess Elizabeth and Princess Margaret (Bel Powley), or P1 and P2 as the princess sisters are called, want in on the action.
“For six years we’ve been cloistered,” says Princess Elizabeth. “Like nuns,” adds Princess Margaret.
“I fell in love so much with this script,” says Gadon. “I was charmed by the story and its portrayal of her at that point in her life. It was this beautiful coming of age story about this woman faced with her future. That is something I really related to. That feeling of when you are growing up and you have all these ideas about the world, all these ideologies you are associated with and then you are confronted with reality and you have to decide for yourself what you want. I thought that was an interesting entry point.”
The slick talking Liz manages to convince Mom (Emily Watson as the Queen Mum) and Dad (Rupert Everett as King George) to let them mingle with the real people, listen to the King’s victory speech and report back.
Royal Night Out is part royal romcom, part urban adventure, and only loosely based on real events. In truth the princesses went out, accompanied by an entourage of 16 people and were home by curfew.
“Julian Jarrold, the director, was so conscious of what he wanted the tone of this film to be,” says Gadon. “We all knew it wasn’t a biopic, and none of us wanted to make that film. It is very much a fantasy, very much an adventure chase film. Being more North American in my approach to the part, my tendencies were to indulge the humour and indulge in the slapstick moments. Julian held the reins tight and really captured the reserve of Elizabeth. He really walked that line between going off too far in either direction. The film has very real feelings but a lot of tongue-in-cheek.”
To capture Queen Elizabeth’s posh accent Gadon studied footage of the princess at that age, the movies Roman Holiday and Brief Encounter and worked with dialect coach Brett Tyne. “Brett worked with all of us,” she says. “It wasn’t just me. She worked with Bel, Emily and Rupert because even though they’re British they certainly don’t walk around talking like that.”
The dialogue coaching worked. A Royal Night Out is already open in England and Gadon notes, “The reviews were great, very generous. And most people had no idea I was Canadian! It was exciting for me.
“I was really, really nervous. To have it received so warmly was such a relief. Now, with the North American release, I’m like, ‘I’m good! I got the stamp of approval from the Brits!’”
“For six years we’ve been cloistered,” says Princess Elizabeth (Sarah Gadon).
“Like nuns,” adds Princess Margaret (Bel Powley).
Its May 8, 1945, VE Day in England, the biggest party London has ever seen and P1 and P2, as the princess sisters are called, want in on the action.
The slick talking Liz manages to convince Mom (Emily Watson as the Queen Mum) and Dad (Rupert Everett as King George) to let them mingle with the real people, listen to the King’s victory speech and report back. Early on they manager to dodge their chaperones, embarking on what Lizzie would later call “the most extraordinary night of my life.” The princesses get separated early on with the naïve Margaret on the prowl for fun, stumbling through an east London boozecan, a wild celebration in Trafalgar Square and a fistfight on a dance floor. “It’s all getting a bit fraught,” she says. Elizabeth, the responsible sister, spends her night trying to catch up with Margaret, aided by Jack (Jack Reynor), a cockney airman who has no idea he’s escorting royalty.
In this case truth is duller than fiction. “A Royal Night Out” is VERY loosely based on real events. In truth the princesses went out, accompanied by an entourage of 16 people and were home by curfew. The movie livens things up with a healthy dose of slapstick and gentle humour. It’s part royal rom com, part urban adventure. Imagine an English “After Hours” without the suicide, murder or treachery. Instead it’s a good-natured romp with some laughs and a splash of romantic tension. There’s no real drama—I was always quite sure Mags and Liz would be OK by the time the end credits rolled—in this slight story but Powley’s hilariously deadpan take on the clueless Margaret coupled with the charisma that pokes through Gadon’s posh demeanour makes for an enjoyable footnote of a movie about a historical footnote.