Monday, December 1, 2008

Another Life (2001) Film Review - Ioan Gruffudd

Plot Summary - Crime and adultery in early 1920s England, based on a true story. Beginning in 1913, we meet a British family the main focus being twentyish daughter Edith aka Edie and her slightly younger sis Avis. Edie, the star here, is a modern girl with a career as a bookkeeper in a millinery shop and a boring boyfriend named Percy, just about to head off for War. Edie is a free spirit who lives in a sort of fairy tale world and loves to use her imagination - she sees Percy as some sort of great male Knight-in-Shining-Armor in the making, a character from some book. They get married, the War ends, and their dull life in a completely lovely and charming house in Ilford (see, told ya I was an anglophile) begins. Enter Avis' new boyfriend, a devilishly handsome playboy sailor/younger man named Freddy (played by the oh so handsome Ioan Gruffudd). Edie and Freddy fall in love/passionate lust and so begins an affair. When hubby won't let her out of their now horrible marriage, she begins to fantasize with Freddy about ways to murder the husband.

Review - This film really recreates a time and place with art direction, period set design, and costuming that is, well, rather glorious. What lovely outfits - and oh all those hats! I particularly enjoyed the earlier 1913 setting, the clothes, the girl's room with all the Victorian scrap on the walls, the kitchen, how cool (oh time machine - where are you, I love 1913)! Two silent film posters shown on the walls during a train station scene, set in 1921/22 - Charlie Chaplin's "The Kid" and Valentino's "Blood and Sand". The acting in this is excellent by the way - the actress who plays Edie, Natasha Little, is quite memorable. And one reason I did want to see this was to see heartthrob Ioan Gruffudd, gorgeous as usual here - very swoon-worthy. I really liked this, especially interesting since it was a true story that I was unfamiliar with (and kudos for them telling us it's a true story at the beginning - I hate it when I'm not sure, or they don't tell you until the end - since I go into a film cold, without knowing anything about what the plot is, I sometimes don't know). Good one. Rating - 9/10 stars

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