Thursday, March 18, 2010

Vanessa Redgrave in "Morgan!"

Vanessa Redgrave received her first nomination (along with her sister) for her performance as Leonie, a sophisticated wife in Morgan!

Vanessa Redgrave's performance has to be one of the most interesting performances to ever have been nominated, and that's not exactly a good thing.

Morgan! is just a mess. The outlandish "comedy" doesn't work for me, and the main character is thoroughly annoying and it's hard to care for him at all. The movie is about a man who has a terrible case of some sort of mental illness, or that's what I took away from the film.

Leonie is his ex-wife who is trying to stop from getting remarried. Vanessa Redgrave's performance could have been boring and a complete failure, but with some nice subtle turns, she is able to turn it into something special.

Vanessa Redgrave turns Leonie is a real person. She could have very well made her into a stone faced woman, instead we get some nice, delicate moments where she looks worried, some moments were she is having fun, and some moments where we actually think she cares about her mess of an ex-husband. Redgrave is completely charming in the part.

However, this performance is far from perfect. While Redgrave is completely charming and understand as the ex-wife, that's really all she is. We are never allowed to enter her mind, and get some understanding. We do get these moments where she seems excited about her ex-husband's outrageous behavior, but we're never allowed to explore that. And near the end, she becomes the one we care about, yet it's pretty much too late.

And like her sister, Redgrave has a very random, spur of the moment dance/singing scene that almost ruins her performance for me.

So, it's a very charming performance, but an incomplete character in a horrible movie.


dinasztie said...

What do you think of Vanessa Redgrave in general?

Anyway, I have just seen Testament. You were right, Jane Alexander was brilliant! Her performance really shocked me. I haven't decided if she was my pick or Meryl, though.

Sage Slowdive said...

I'm not really a fan of hers, but I can see she has the acting chops to pull off a performance. I'm not a fan at all of her performance in Julia, but she shines in the role.

Glad you loved her!