Posts Tagged ‘Roxanne Duran’

Celebrating Dior

Mrs Harris Goes to Paris

Director: Anthony Fabian

Cast: Lesley Manville, Isabelle Huppert, Lambert Wilson, Alba Baptiste, Lucas Bravo, Jason Isaacs, Christian McKay, Freddie Fox, Ellen Thomas, Roxanne Duran

Film Rating: 7.5 out of 10

Running Time: 1 hour and 55 minutes

This film is in English and French with subtitles.

Oscar nominee Lesley Manville (Phantom Thread) returns to the world of 1950’s fashion in the delightful remake of the 1992 Television film Mrs Harris Goes to Paris based on the novel by Paul Gallico and stars as a London cleaning lady Ada Harris.

Upon finding out that her beloved husband was declared dead while missing in action in World War II, Mrs Harris receives a War Widow’s pension pay out from the military and through a series of fortunate events saves up enough money to tell her friend Violet Butterfield played by Ellen Thomas and her male friend Archie played by Jason Isaacs (Hotel Mumbai, A Cure for Wellness) that she is going to Paris to buy a Christian Dior haute couture dress worth 500 pounds. This is 1957 in London, so that was a tidy sum to pay for a frock.

MHP_08235_RC (l-ctr.) Roxane Duran stars as Marguerite, Bertrand Poncet as Monsieur Carré and Lesley Manville as Mrs. Harris in director Tony Fabian’s MRS.HARRIS GOES TO PARIS, a Focus Features release. Credit: Dávid Lukács / © 2021 Ada Films Ltd – Harris Squared Kft

As the title suggests, Mrs Harris does indeed go to Paris to the eccentric and complicated House of Dior run by Madame Colbert wonderfully played with panache by Oscar nominee Isabelle Huppert (Elle) and soon makes friend with the young and dashing account manager Andre Fauvel played by Emily in Paris star Lucas Bravo (Ticket to Paradise). As Mrs Harris soon discovers everything at Dior is not what they seem, despite the gorgeous gowns and the glamour. The fashion house is in economic decline and needs to attract a new set of clientele.

MHP_06584_RC Lesley Manville stars as Mrs. Harris and Lambert Wilson as Marquis de Chassange in director Tony Fabian’s MRS.HARRIS GOES TO PARIS, a Focus Features release. Credit: Dávid Lukács / © 2021 Ada Films Ltd – Harris Squared Kft

With her forthright and street smart attitude, Mrs Harris soon gets her beautiful dress while disrupting the House of Dior and warding off the overtures from the fussy but debonair Marquis de Chassagne played by French actor Lambert Wilson (The Matrix Resurrections, 5 to 7), while realizing deep down that she will eventually have to return to her life as a cleaning lady and deal with her posh employers including Giles Newcombe played by Christian McKay and Lady Dant wonderfully played by Anna Chancellor (Four Weddings and a Funeral, The Dreamers).

Extremely well cast with both British and French actors, Mrs Harris Goes to Paris is a delightful film about a woman fulfilling her dreams while gaining a beautiful dress and finding a place to eventually show off that gown with the real man of her dreams. Lesley Manville is exceptional as Mrs Harris downplaying the role to perfection while making Mrs Harris believable and more significantly relatable.

MHP_13739_R Lucas Bravo stars as André Fauvel, Lesley Manville as Mrs. Harris and Alba Baptista as Natasha in director Tony Fabian’s MRS.HARRIS GOES TO PARIS, a Focus Features release. Credit: Dávid Lukács / © 2021 Ada Films Ltd – Harris Squared Kft

The young actors Lucas Bravo and Alba Baptiste provide some eye candy, while the Dior gowns steal the show particularly the infamous dress which makes international headlines.

If viewers love an excellent feel good film, then watch Mrs Harris Goes to Paris, its light enough not to be taken too seriously but strong enough to make a lasting impression as it subtly makes comments about industrial action, class relations and high fashion.

Mrs Harris Goes To Paris gets a film rating of 7.5 out of 10 and is highly recommended viewing.

Love Demands Sacrifice

Narcissus and Goldmund

Director: Stefan Ruzowitzky

Cast: Jannis Niewohner, Sabin Tambrea, Roxanne Duran, Henriette Confurius, Elisa Schlott, Emilia Schule, Georg Friedrich, Matthias Habich, Andre Hennicke

Austrian Entry for the European Film Festival 2020

This film is in German with English Subtitles.

Winner of the 2008 Oscar for Best Foreign Language Film for The Counterfeiters, Austrian director Stefan Ruzowitzky returns to the Big Screen with the film adaptation of famed 20th century German author Hermann Hesse’s medieval novel Narcissus and Goldmund which is the Austrian entry for the European Film Festival.

Set in the 14th century in medieval Germany at the time of the Black Death plague which swept Europe, Narcissus and Goldmund focuses on the homoerotic friendship of two young men in the monastery Mariabronn. Narcissus is devoted to the monastic life of prayer and soliture and aims to become an Abbott.

His life is upended by the arrival of the gorgeous yet adventurous Goldmund, wonderfully played by German actor Jannis Niewohner, whose blond hair and sparkling blue eyes lands him in all sorts of trouble. Narcissus is played by Romanian actor Sabin Tambrea whose portrayal of tortured love and self-flagellation is nuanced and perfect.

Unlike Narcissus who has to constantly suppress his unrequited love, Goldmund on the other hand is a drifter, who decides that the Church life is not for him and embarks on a picaresque adventure as a young and handsome man who frequently lands himself in the beds of every available German maiden.

Goldmund is duped by the German noblewoman Lydia played by Emilia Schule and is taken up by the wealthy and entitled Julia played by Elisa Schlott. Riviera star, French actress Roxanne Duran also has a brief role as a noblewoman who seduces Goldmund.

Besides his numerous romantic adventures, Goldmund also has to use his wits to survive the growing devastation of the Bubonic plague which swept through 14th Century Europe as well as surviving the rage of his numerous patrons from Furst played by Georg Friedrich and Burger played by Matthias Habich. Goldmund possesses a unique talent of creating beautiful wooden sculptures and when he returns to Narcissus for assistance, his friend commissions him to create a beautiful altar for St Catherine at the Monastery.

Haunted with eternally searching for his lost mother, Goldmund creates a ravishing wooden sculpture reflecting all the woman he has met and seduced, a religious art piece that causes controversy amidst the cloistered monks. Narcissus confronts Goldmund about his suppressed love for him, but unfortunately their social circumstances forces them to remain apart.

As the prying Lothar played by Andre Hennicke says to Narcissus, a lifetime devotion to God is a love which demands sacrifice.

Narcisssus and Goldmund is a fascinating film about male friendship in the medieval times, about two diametrically opposed characters that ultimately lean on each other to survive in a harsh and judgmental society which was completely controlled by the Church.

Gorgeously shot with some unforgettable and enlightening sequences, Narcissus and Goldmund gets a film rating of 7.5 out of 10 and is definitely worth seeing.

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