29 January 2018

Their Finest

Their Finest 2016
  • Director: Lone Scherfig
  • Based on the novel by Liss Evans
  • Cast: Gemma Arterton, Bill Nighy, Sam Claflin, Richard E. Grant, Henry Goodman, Rachel Stirling, Jack Huston, Amanda Root, Eddie Marsan, Helen McCrory, Jeremy Irons
  • Personal “oh yeah him/her” reaction, i.e. have seen this actor in:
    • Gemma Arterton – The Girl with All the Gifts, Song for Marion, The Boat that Rocked, Quantum of Solace, Lost in Austen
    • Bill Nighy – Hotel Marigold 1 & 2, About Time, The World’s End, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Doctor Who, The Boat that Rock, Valkyrie, Pirates of the Caribbean, Hot Fuzz, Notes on a Scandal, Gideon’s Daughter, The Constant Gardener, The Girl in the Café, The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, Shaun of the Dead, Love Actually, Auf Wiedersehen Pet, Kiss Me Kate
    • Sam Claflin – Huntsman Winter’s War, Hunger Games, Pirates of the Caribbean, Pillars of the Earth
    • Richard E. Grant – About Time, Doctor Who, Colour Me Kubrick, Bright Young Things, Gosford Park, Keep the Aspidistra Flying, Twelfth Night, Cold Lazarus, Karaoke, Absolutely Fabulous, Withnail & I
    • Henry Goodman – London Spy, Woman in Gold, Taking Woodstock, Colour Me Kubrick, The Merchant of Venice, Notting Hill, Cold Lazarus, Mary Reilly
    • Rachel Stirling – Bletchley Circle, Doctor Who, Salmon Fishing in the Yemen, Young Victoria
    • Jack Huston – Not Fade Away, Factory Girl
    • Amanda Root – Sherlock, Rose and Maloney, Little Britain, A Touch of Frost, Daniel Deronda, Whatever Happened to Harold Smith, Jane Eyre, The Man Who Cried
    • Eddie Marsan – River, Filth, The World’s End, Sherlock Holmes A Game of Shadows, Merlin, Sherlock Holmes, Happy-Go-Lucky, The Illusionist, V for Vendetta, Vera Drake, 21 Grams, Gangs of New York
    • Helen McCrory – Skyfall, Hugo, Harry Potter, Doctor Who, Flashbacks, Becoming Jane Austen, The Queen, Hotel Splendide
    • Jeremy Irons – Beautiful Creatures, The Hollow Crown, Kingdom of Heaven, Being Julia, The Merchant of Venice, Longitude, The House of Spirits, Waterland, Kafka, Reversal of Fortune, Brideshead Revisited, The French Lieutenant’s Woman
  • Why? Bill Nighy
  • Seen: 26 January 2018      

       London during the war is always interesting. This one takes place in 1940. What is needed is a good propaganda film and it is thought that a woman’s angle would be good. Catrin Cole (Arterton), a secretary, is hired. Her husband Ellis (Huston), an artist whose work is considered by the war office to be too brutal, isn’t pleased. Nor is she welcomed by the studio, especially the snobbish out-of-work actor Ambrose Hilliard (Nighy).
       Catrin is caught in an air raid and her husband wants her to go home to Wales, not only for her safety but because he can’t afford to keep the flat. He resents the money she makes.
       She perseveres. She has office intrigues, distortion of truth, and male chauvinism to deal with.
       Ambrose is loath to play an old drunken uncle in the film Catrin and her team are creating but he has no choice.
       This rather odd, meandering film is lifted by a cast of the British best in small roles. They’re all very good but as always Nighy, whose role isn’t small, dominates every scene he’s in. And the behind the scenes of movie making are interesting.
       It’s a movie that grows.

4 * of 5

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