• 1991movierewind

Episode #56: Enchanted April

Listen to Episode 56 of the Podcast here while you enjoy the show notes.


SUMMARY - Enchanted April takes place in 1920s London. Lottie (played by Josie Lawrence) is a housewife stuck in a loveless marriage who is desperate to get away. In the newspaper, she spots an ad about renting a castle in Italy. Though she can’t afford it herself, she convinces her new friend Rose (played by Miranda Richardson) and two other women to chip in for a month-long vacation they hope to never forget.


Screenplay by Peter Barnes; Directed by Mike Newell, and premiered at the BFI Film Festival on November 6, 1991


FILM DISCUSSION

Immediately, the first thing we noticed was how everything is shot in surprisingly tight close-ups

Apparently, this was originally a TV movie that they later decided to release theatrically. That accounts for some of it, but the lack of headroom is quite jarring at times.

The movie does an okay job of setting up their characters but it seems like everything moves so fast that we are only to see one-dimension.

When arriving at the castle, the views provided are underwhelming. Several good garden shots, but no sprawling vistas for us to enjoy and many of the exterior shots of the place look like this for some reason.

No one knows how to eat spaghetti. One of the more effective intentionally comedic moments.

On the dramatic side, Rose's self-reflection and conflicting emotions provided the most depth.

While everyone had a transformation of sorts, the progression wasn't noticeable. It felt like a light switch was turned on to make everyone different at a certain point.

There were several areas that seemed to be set-up for a future conflict or plot point, but the story didn't play out in that way.

The ending is a little bit storybook as well, and we wish the middle part had a bit of that same magical vibe.

Awards Talk: Since this came out in the US in 1992, it was eligible for the 1993 Oscars. The movie was nominated for Best Supporting Actress Joan Plowright, Adapted Screenplay, and Costume Design (Sheena Napier). At the Golden Globes, Miranda Richardson won for Best Actress in a Comedy and Joan Plowright won for Best Supporting Actress. It was nominated for Best Comedy/Musical.


TRUE CRIME & POP CULTURE

This week we don't have any true crime, but there are a couple of significant historical events to talk about.


We briefly touch on the Kuwaiti Oil Fires

https://www.washingtonpost.com/archive/politics/1991/11/07/kuwaiti-emir-snuffs-out-last-iraqi-lit-oil-fire/71bf5ae7-93f4-4d1e-92db-977d38a8bf6b/


This day also marked the death of Gene Tierney

https://www.nytimes.com/1991/11/08/movies/gene-tierney-70-star-of-laura-and-leave-her-to-heaven-dies.html

Skipping Music and going right into TV, we watched an episode of Unsolved Mysteries and went over our thoughts on each one. We also talk about the ad for Quantum Leap underneath the episode description


Also, we briefly touch on this TV movie that debuted on the same date. It's on our list, so we can dive deeper into it then.

http://www.tvtango.com/listings/1991/11/06/false_arrest

Since we have a TV guide, we can also share the ad for Brooklyn Bridge, a show we discuss in the episode.


RANKINGS & RATINGS

Nikki 1-5 star scale - 2 out of 5

Jon 0-4 star scale - 1 1/2 out of 4

Would you watch it again? - We didn't hate this movie, but it felt a bit incomplete. So, while we wouldn't watch this version again, it might benefit for a longer remake. We also would be interested to see the 1935 version. This iteration had great acting, but was missing the great characterization that would draw us back.


If you want to watch Enchanted April, as of this recording in March 2022, it’s available on Pluto TV, Digital Rental, VHS, DVD. Check your local listings.


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