Sunday, April 13, 2008

Miss Palfrey Falls Hard

Don’t see this movie—a helpful blog for women over 47.

You can’t be too careful. I never go to a movie with a trailer showing bloody dazed looking people chained in basements screaming, “Why are you doing this? Who the hell are you!” But even the most careful person can accidentally watch something that will harm her even though it is British and stars Joan Plowright. I need a protective companion one that sits nearby and covers my eyes and rubs my cold little hands when movies turn bad.

Those of you who don’t have Tivo may be unaware that Tivo records programs that it thinks that you might be interested in based on other programs you may have watched while having a bad cold or when you briefly considered widening your knowledge of the animal kingdom and watched a program on the nature channel.

Tivo technology is not sophisticated; it cannot be programmed to avoid special areas of squeamishness. Mine are: animals, children and women in pain. Okay, I can’t stand to see anyone being tortured even if he is a man

And its no good closing my eyes or leaving the movie to wander the lobby until hideous scene is over. I always come back too soon. I was back before basement torture scene in Pulp Fiction and I returned to the Coversation just as the toilet is flushed and something bloody, comes back into the bowl. Or as they used to say on Monty Python: “Nobody expects and Spanish Inquisition” and I certainly didn’t expect to be cast into the a deep depression by a little Brit flick called Mrs. Palfrey at the Claremont. Early in the film, Mrs. P. trips over a speck of dust on the sidewalk and falls in front of the flat of a young, amazingly handsome loser writer named Ludwig whose mother doesn’t appreciate him.

Mrs. P tells the young lad of her first date with her dead husband Walter in which they went to see Brief Encounter and both dissolved into tears and decided to marry on the spot.

Okay this is total bullshit, show me a man who dissolved into tears or even sat through Brief Encounter and I’ll give you my left ear…. didn’t happen. It’s a girl’s wet dream…. Later the young lad goes to video store and discovers a beautiful girl reaching for Brief Encounter at the same moment he’s reaching for it and because he doesn’t have a VCR, she invites him, a stranger resembling Ted Bundy, over to her flat to watch it.

Deeply in love, they ignore Mrs. P and she goes into a steep decline, verbally attacking the other lonely people at her hotel, and in a fit of pique dashes down the stairs and breaks her hip and then dies a few weeks later in the hospital, after having mistaken her young friend for Walter and telling him she’s looking forward to being dead and joining him. Well, she gets her wish and the young boy who we have to thank for this mawkish memoir gets a book out of it.

Okay it’s only a movie, but if we are asked to swallow the improbability of a straight man who cries during Brief Encounter, then why can’t we have Mrs. P recover from her fall, have a hip replacement and start running a squash camp for widows or a high class brothel or whatever… There’s too much reality around. Let’s put a stop to it now.


Erica said...

You are so right about this movie. I was gagging and retching throughout, wondering what horny old bag's wet dream this was (and this is coming from a horny old bag here) and just why I was continuing to sit there giving it the benefit of the doubt. But just like a bad meal that still doesn't taste good after the fifth bite, this thing hung on to its badness, in fact it sort of embroidered on it to heights of mawkishness never before reached, until I finally had the strength to get off my ass and remove it from the DVD player, hoping it hadn't left any treacly goo there to muck up the next innocent netflixer I had lying around.

Peg said...

I am horrified by the very thought of TiVo.