Projections - Movie Reviews

De-Lovely
De-Lovely
Starring Kevin Kline, Ashley Judd, Jonathan Pryce, Kevin McNally, Sandra Nelson,
Allan Corduner, Natalie Cole, Elvis Costello, Sheryl Crow

De-lovely is a love story most of us wouldn’t stand for.

At the same time it’s a strangely warm and inspirational romance framed with the lyrical music of Cole Porter (Kevin Kline) as he observes his life through a mysterious stranger, Gabe (Jonathan Pryce) who transports a dying Porter to an empty theater where Gabe directs a stage version of Cole’s life story. It looks a little like “All that Jazz” but has a different energy.

Much of Cole’s productive life takes place in the Jazz Age when wealthy folks were gay (happy and care-free) a different meaning than today. We follow Porter and his wife Linda (Ashley Judd) through their strong warm love for each other which is not diminished by his affairs with handsome young men. Linda accepts his life-style except when it interferes with their life or his work It’s a strange romance that moves in comfortable worlds in New York, Paris and eventually Williamstown, MA where Cole develops one of his best projects “Kiss Me Kate.”

Both Cole and Linda carry burdens later in life, he crushes his legs in a ridding accident and her constant smoking eventually takes her life. Even with the pain and the peculiar relationship the romance comes through and is strangely inspiring.

But the heart of the film is the music produced by Cole Porter. And the music: “What Is This Thing Called Love,” “Let’s Misbehave” (by Elvis Costello), “Night and Day,” “Anything Goes,” Just One Of Those Things” (by Diana Krall), “You’re the Top” and “Ev’ry Time We Say Goodbye” (by Natalie Cole). So many great classics which remain a part of music today come from Porter and most relate to love and romance.

While Kevin Kline looks more like Errol Flynn than Cole Porter as he ages, we see him swept up in the essence of Linda and we travel with him through to atmosphere of his brilliant musical creations. The music and romance lift his life and our spirit.

 
Frank
Chris
Tony
Jim
Howard
Jennifer
Kathleen
Avg.
De-Lovely
B+
 
 
C+
F
B+
B-
C-

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