Crooked House (2017)

Crooked House
Director: Gilles Paquet-Brenner
Writer: Julian Fellowes, Tim Rose Price, Gilles Paquet-Brenner
Based on: Agatha Christie‘s novel
Cast: Max Irons, Stefanie Martini, Glenn Close, Honor Kneafsey, Christina Hendricks, Terence Stamp, Julian Sands, Gillian Anderson, Christian McKay, Amanda Abbington, Preston Nyman
Seen on: 17.12.2018

Charles Hayward (Max Irons) used to be a diplomat/spy in Egypt, but now he is back in London and takes up a business as a private detective. When the rich Aristide Leonides is poisoned in his home, his granddaughter Sophia (Stefanie Martini) calls on Hayward, who was her lover some time ago, to solve the case. Hayward arrives at the Leonides estate to face a complicated family filled with suspects and suspicions.

Crooked House was bad. Holy shit, it was such an exhausting film. I hated it so much, I was very happy that I coincidentally had alcohol-filled chocolates with me so I could dull the pain a little.

The film poster showing the main characters in front of a dark manor.
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Mary Poppins

Mary Poppins
Director: Richard Eyre
Writer: Julian Fellowes (book), Richard M. Sherman, Robert B. Sherman (original music and lyrics), George Stiles, Anthony Drewe (additional music and lyrics)
Based on: the Disney movie, which is in turn based on P.L. Traversbooks
Cast: Annemieke Van Dam, David Boyd, Fiona Bella Imnitzer, Katharina Kemp, Filippa Lengyel, Meta Schumy, Moritz Krainz, David Paul Mannhart, Lorenz Pojer, Jonas Zeiler, Reinwald Kranner, Milica Jovanovic, Sandra Pires

The Banks family have troubles with their nannies. The children Jane (Fiona Bella Imnitzer, Filippa Lengyel, Katharina Kemp, Meta Schumy – depending on the day) and Michael (Moritz Krainz, David Paul Mannhart, Lorenz Pojer, Jonas Zeiler – depending on the day) are out of control, chasing one nanny after the other away. Their father George (Reinwald Kranner) believes that they need a stricter hand, while their mother Winifred (Milica Jovanovic) is generally caught up in her own world. But then Mary Poppins (Annemieke Van Dam) shows up and takes on the entire family with the help of multitalent Bert (David Boyd) and a dash of magic.

The production of Mary Poppings does a good job of translating the film to the stage, though not all changes are for the better (and I don’t remember the books that vividly, but I think that they moved even further away from them). I enjoyed watching it.


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The Young Victoria (2009)

The Young Victoria was directed by Jean-Marc Vallée, written by Julian Fellowes and stars Emily Blunt, Rupert Friend, Paul Bettany, Mark Strong, Jim Broadbent, Miranda Richardson and Thomas Kretschmann.

The movie tells the story of how Victoria became Queen Victoria and how she met her husband, Prince Albert.
Victoria (Emily Blunt) is the niece of the current King of England. Since she’s the only child of that generation, she’s going to inherit the throne. Her mother (Miranda Richardson), under the influence of Sir John Conroy (Mark Strong), tries to make her sign over the regency, which Victoria succesfully resists. But her mother is not the only one who wants to influence Victoria: Her uncle, the King of England (Jim Broadbent), sends her Lord Melbourne (Paul Bettany) as a political advisor and her other uncle, the King of Belgium (Thomas Kretschmann), sends her his nephew Albert (Rupert Friend) as a potential husband.

The movie is wonderful. I mean, of course it’s a kitsch-fest, but it’s a beautiful, well-acted kitsch-fest that hits all the right notes and manages to stay mostly historically accurate. What’s not to like?

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