Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Darling (1965) (2nd time)

A beautiful but amoral model sleeps her way to the top of the London fashion scene at the height of the Swinging Sixties. [imdb]

Nominated for 5 Oscars:

Best Picture
Best Director: John Schlesinger
Best Actress: Julie Christie (WINNER)
Best Original Screenplay (WINNER)
Best Costume Design, Black-and-White (WINNER)

I bet it's good to be Julie Christie. Boy she was GORGEOUS. And this is a very special film that I really recommend to all movie lovers. It's very British and very 1960s, which were a huge boom for European directors. I've seen this film again for my Best Actress discussions happening on my other blog. I'll be doing 1965 next and I'll be posting Julie's profile soon.
The big star of the film is the director. John Schlesinger deserved an Oscar for this, even with the strong competition he had. Unfortunately, no win (he won 4 years later for Midnight Cowboy, but this was better). His direction is subtle, creative, surprising and in a great mix and understanding of the screenplay. Fabulous.
The film is rather easy to watch. It's a drama, but not a complicated one. Even when there's crying, it still feels light, with a lot of sarcasm and a bit of a comedy touch. Julie's performance is not your usual Oscar performance; it's mostly playful and kind of subtle and when she goes for it it's not the loud crying/shouting you're expecting to find in an Oscar actress. I'm not sure yet if she was the best of the 5, but it's a very inspired, creative performance. And the casting in dead on!!!
The screenplay is very witty so the win comes natural. Yes, it's a very good screenplay, especially in the 2nd half. The costumes are contemporary, but it was a weak category and that's why it won.
My rating for the film: 8/10. Really can't say why not more. I appreciated the parts of it, but maybe they didn't always glue together. Anyway: I totally recommend it!

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