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The Girl on the Train

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Poster for the movie "The Girl on the Train"

The Girl on the Train

What you see can hurt you.

20161 h 52 min
Overview

Rachel Watson, an alcoholic who divorced her husband Tom after she caught him cheating on her, takes the train to work daily. She fantasises about the relationship of her neighbours, Scott and Megan Hipwell, during her commute. That all changes when she witnesses something from the train window and Megan is missing, presumed dead.

Metadata
Director Tate Taylor
Runtime 1 h 52 min
Release Date 6 October 2016
Details
Movie Status
Movie Rating Very good
Images

I had listened to the audio book several months before going to see this at the cinema and was anticipating it in that way you do when you have really enjoyed a book and are wondering how many ways the film can butcher it.  In this case there was also the concern that the British location of the original had been transferred to the USA.

Of course, in a film there is never the luxury of time that a book can give to a story as it meanders through the inner lives of characters, so it’s unfair to judge like for like.  However in this case I was happily surprised, although some parts seemed skimmed (Megan’s backstory, for example) for the most part this was an excellent interpretation.  Emily Blunt did a great job as the alcoholic Rachel and even though the ending wasn’t a surprise this was a much more positive experience than I had anticipated.

 

Florence Foster Jenkins

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Poster for the movie ""
Not rated yet!

Florence Foster Jenkins

20161 h 50 min
Overview

The story of Florence Foster Jenkins, a New York heiress, who dreamed of becoming an opera singer, despite having a terrible singing voice.

Metadata
Director Stephen Frears
Runtime 1 h 50 min
Release Date 6 May 2016
Details
Movie Status
Movie Rating Not rated
Images

 

florencefosterjenkins

I can’t make my mind up about Florence Foster Jenkins. Was she the likeable, vulnerable if eccentric character portrayed by Meryl Streep? Or was she the entitled, arrogant woman who was rich enough to surround herself with sycophants and never learned the truth until it killed her?
However, that aside and remembering that this is a film review and not an investigative report, the movie itself is great.   Meryl Streep is almost boring these days in her brilliant portrayals of a myriad of characters and FFJ is no exception.
If you’ve never heard of Mrs Jenkins, she was the rich socialite who decided she wanted to be an opera singer even though she couldn’t hold a note and eventually she sang at Carnegie Hall.  Since her death in 1944 her recordings have become classics, although for their comedic rather than their musical value.
There are many examples of her songs on the Internet and listening to them I was impressed with Meryl Streep’s accurate (if painful) renditions which must be difficult when you can actually sing.
Hugh Grant gave a charming performance as Florence’s common law husband and the relationship between them was as touching as it was unconventional. The strangely named Cosme McMoon (played by The Big Bang’s Simon Helberg) was her pianist who couldn’t believe his luck at being paid so much and couldn’t believe his ears at the noise he was being asked to accompany.
A warm and funny film but if you’re like me and need to dig deeper after watching any ‘based on a true story’ film I suggest that AFTER you’ve seen it you watch the full length documentary about Mrs Jenkins that can be found on YouTube.