Thursday, August 11, 2016

Florence Foster Jenkins Movie Review - 3 Stars

The life of a tone-deaf Manhattan socialite provides an easy comic target in the charming movie "Florence Foster Jenkins." Meryl Streep plays the overconfident diva with enough sweetness to allow us viewers the joy of cheering the woman's efforts. In real life, Florence Foster Jenkins made light opera recordings and performed at Carnegie Hall shortly before her death in 1944. The movie does a fine job recreating wartime Manhattan, and presenting Jenkins' performance for her elderly somewhat deaf social set. A nice cast includes Hugh Grant as Jenkins' husband and sometime ham actor St. Clair Bayfield. I especially enjoyed Simon Helberg as Jenkins' bewildered pianist. The story flows off the screen with easy charm. I imagine the truth of the real Florence Foster Jenkins' life is more complicated and probably a lot more narcissistic. Her story makes for a quirky entertaining hour and a half. 3 stars and PG-13 for a few sexual situations. Does it deliver what it promises? Meryl Streep comic performance. Is it entertaining? It hits all the right notes. Is it worth the price of admission? Great great fun.