Tuesday, February 21, 2006

The Country Girl

Muddled screenplay undercuts ridiculous melodrama. William Holden, sly as ever, never seems to be in the same universe as the movie; too fast, too solid, too smart, too everything, he may as well be rotoscoped in from another dimension.
William Westmore was charged with the hopeless task of making Grace Kelly look haggard and tired. Her performance may be good but she is completely undone by her luminous, sculptured features. The camera can't get enough of her shoulders and chin, even while she is gasping out some pretty bad speeches (almost Padme-bad. Almost Episode III-bad.) Bing Crosby sings some and also portrays a drunk and is forced to spout half-baked dependency psycho-babble. Pauline Kael calls it "odd" and she is right.

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