Friday, 13 June 2014

Grace of Monaco

Predictably 'Grace of Monaco' has attracted mostly negative reviews. This self confessed fiction based on 'real events' relates a few months in the life of Princess Grace, the former actress Grace Kelly.

The Principality of Monaco is under pressure from President De Gaulle of France to impose taxes on its citizens and to remit these to finance the war occurring in Algeria. At the same time Alfred Hitchcock has offered Grace a return to films an action which would not doubt displease her husband Prince Rainier and the Monegasques.

On its own this slice of story and the portrayed household double cross twist could have made for an interesting drama but given the plethora of real names amongst the characters it is easy view the whole affair as some form of historical documentary.

In essence 'Grace of Monaco' is a glorified soap opera. Lush and at times gorgeous to view but pretty sudsy soap nonetheless. It is also a peculiar film which at times drifts into other movie genres. For a while we are treated to a version of Pygmalion as Grace receives belated instruction on how to be a Princess. The next thing we seem to be in a 1940s film noir spy suspense.

The best scenes are those between Frank Langella as a supportive Priest and Nicole Kidman as Grace. The climactic scene where Grace triumphs with her formal speech is unconvincing. Generally the film is a bit of a miss mash. Enjoyable in parts but a miss mash nevertheless.

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