19 February 2021.
They are opening up shops and museums from March, but not restaurants, cafes, or our beloved cinemas. So in the meantime, here are a few previous British superlatives in the realm of filmdom…
To download any of these, try first Netflix or Amazon, and YouTube can often be a good source. There’s also something called cinefile.ch. Good luck.
WOMEN IN LOVE (1969)
Controversial creator Ken Russel directs D.H. Lawrence’s romantic, provocative novel with bold sensuality and complexity, aided of course by the brilliant performances of Alan Bates, Oliver Reed and Glenda Jackson at the height of their powers. Be prepared to be shaken by its unvarnished emotions and its openness to all forms of sexuality.
This sumptuous portrayal of the life of Queen Elizabeth I is illuminated by Cate Blanchett’s performance of the monarch in her early years. Shekhar Kapur directs with verve and passion, yet at times exaggerates the many cinematic licenses he takes concerning her political reign and her private relationships. Taken with a grain of salt, it is thoroughly captivating.
This is quite an incredible film – only one man, in one car, the whole time on different calls to his boss, to his wife and to a woman who is in labor having his child, as he is having to decide where he goes in his life from here. It is simple yet immensely deep due to a mesmerizing script (and direction by Stephen Knight), and the huge talent of Tom Hardy as the beleaguered Locke.
FLORENCE FOSTER JENKINS (2016)
This film, based on a real character from the 1940s, is utterly hilarious along with a blend of the incredulous along with tender sentimentality. Played to perfection by the inimitable Meryl Streep and a revitalised Hugh Grant as her philandering yet loyal husband (finally shaking off his repetitive pretty boy roles), it tells of a wealthy woman who believing that she had a great operatic voice, literally screeched her way to lamentable concerts that had high society laughing behind her back. Stephen Frears directs with both brio and heart.
THE CHILDREN ACT (MY LADY) (2017)
Directed by the great Richard Eyre, with superb acting by Emma Thompson as a High Court judge and Stanley Tucci as her husband, this potent mix of a marriage going through a crisis, and an important case concerning a life-and-death decision on the part of the judge, makes for a powerful film about marital neglect, responsibility, misplaced pride and religious indoctrination. Rich and complex.
Superb **** Very Good *** Good ** Mediocre * Miserable – no stars
Neptune Ravar Ingwersen reviews film extensively for publications in Switzerland. She views 4 to 8 films a week and her aim is to sort the wheat from the chaff for readers.