Tuesday, January 22, 2008

The Countess

Saw The White Countess a couple evenings ago. Got it from our new Library! Reviews on line didn't seem to appreciate it, but we were both engrossed. If you haven't seen it, it's set in Shanghai in the mid thirties and the Japanese are on the point of invading. The countess and her White Russian family have fled the USSR and live in poverty-- she goes out at night to make money any way she can at a dance bar.

A drove of Redgraves are in it including Natasha Richardson whose voice reminded us of her mother's and whose face reminded us of Garbo. Vanessa and Lynn Redgrave gave wonderful performances. I guess some people didn't like Ralph Fienes, but again we differed. I thought he was perfect as the blind man. We liked it so much we listened to the commentary with Natasha Richardson and James Ivory. It's fashionable to sneer at Merchant-Ivory these days, but I don't. The features included a memorial to the work of the late Ismail Merchant.

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