Thursday, May 13, 2021

Thursday Movie Picks #357: Period Drama

This being Thursday, it's time for another edition of Thursday Movie Picks, the blogathon run by Wandering Through the Shelves. This week, the theme is "Period Dramas", which isn't too difficult. In fact, it's been done before, so the big task was to select three movies that I haven't used before, or at least not in a couple of years. (In fact, I don't think I've used any of them before this week.) I also decided to pick three movies that are all set in a period fairly close to each other:

Women in Love (1970). Glenda Jackson (who won an Oscar in a weak year for the category) and Jennie Linden play a pair of modern sisters in 1920s England who don't much care for the conventions of the time. They meet Oliver Reed and Alan Bates respectively at a friend's wedding, and begin to start torrid relationships. Based on the D.H. Lawrence novel, I frankly hated the movie as I felt it went nowhere and included a couple of pointless scenes, such as Glenda Jackson's interpretive dance when confronted by cattle:

As I said in my original review, the cattle realized there was enough BS in the movie already and walked off. Oh, there's also the nude wrestling scene between Reed and Bates, if that's your thing.

Agatha (1979). Mystery writer Agatha Christie (Vanessa Regrave) famously disappeared for 11 days in December 1926. There's been much speculation about what happened during those 11 days, although nobody really knows. This movie posits a rather fanciful scenario, with Agatha fleeing her estranged husband Archie (Timothy Dalton). An American journalist (Dustin Hoffman) finds her, but does she want his help?

Gosford Park (2001). In early 1930s England, one of those old English manors hosts a party for a bunch of people at which a murder occurs. The rich upstairs folks as well as the downstairs help are all scandalized by it.


joel65913 said...

I'm with you on Women in Love. I found if odd to no good purpose. A shame since I love Glenda, Alan Bates and to a lesser degree Oliver Reed. I'm delighted that Glenda has two Oscars I just wish they were for other films. She's certainly given award level performances numerous times.

Again Agatha never really seemed to get started, despite the advantage of a goddess like Vanessa Redgrave in the lead and being backed up by Dustin Hoffman.

That's not the case with Gosford Park though. It's not particularly deep but a fine mystery with an unbelievably good cast and gorgeous set and costume design.

I did a theme within by choosing three set during Revolutionary War times.

Drums Along the Mohawk (1939)- Attempting to forge a life and livelihood out of the central New York wilderness as the nation is born Lana and Gil Martin (Claudette Colbert & Henry Fonda) are besieged by Tory, Indian and British forces but they persevere. A depiction of the dangerous rigors faced by settlers on the frontier during the Revolutionary War.

The Scarlet Coat (1955)-Benedict Arnold (Robert Douglas), Commander of the Continental Army at West Point conspires with Redcoat Major John Andre (Michael Wilding) to surrender defense of the fort to the British for a large sum of cash as the Revolutionary War rages. Sensing trouble American Major John Boulton (Cornel Wilde) undertakes a counter-intelligence operation to stop the deal from going through.

1776 (1972)-The events and personages involved in the lead up to and signing of The Declaration of Independence all set to music. Though there is some artistic license taken this adaptation of the Broadway hit, which is scheduled for a revival later this year, captures the essence of the story.

Brittani Burnham said...

I haven't seen any of these but that dance scene is....something.

Birgit said...

I am so happy that I avoid Women in Love because It is a "message" movie from the 70s...ughhh. That scene with Glenda and the poor cattle just sums up so many 70s films that try to be artsy. I have not seen the film about Agatha Christie either and that is one I would like to see. I find her disappearance very interesting. I liked Gosford Park and would like to watch it again but Downton Abbey is so much better.

ThePunkTheory said...

I remember Gosford Park - need to rewatch that one soon!