Ebene News – GB – Film review – To Olivia (2021)

Directed by John Hay
With Hugh Bonneville, Keeley Hawes, Sam Heughan, Conleth Hill, Isabella Jonsson, Darcey Ewart and Bodhi Marsan

Roald Dahl and his wife – actor Patricia Neal – struggle to reinvigorate their creative careers after the death of their eldest daughter

Roald Dahl is one of the most beloved children’s writers of all time and the characters he created are inspiring other media at an incredible rate Last year brought a new adaptation of The Witches, while longtime musical Matilda is soon heading to the big screen and Netflix is ​​working on a ton of new projects Dahl His designs are timeless, but what about the author himself? Veteran TV director John Hay makes the jump to movies with To Olivia, which follows one of Dahl’s toughest years

The film begins with the Dahl family settled in their Buckinghamshire home Roald (Hugh Bonneville) recently released James and the Giant Peach and is currently working on a fantasy tale set in a chocolate factory Point out at least half a dozen excruciating nods and nudges that gobstoppers “never last long enough” and encounters with greedy kids called “Augustus” Dahl and his wife Patricia Neal (Keeley Hawes) are in heartache when their seven-year-old daughter, Olivia, dies after contracting encephalitis from measles

There is certainly something more poignant about To Olivia in the wake of 2020, which tells a story about immense and thrilling creativity born from the ashes of grief in Hay’s film, carefully scripted by director and co – screenwriter David Logan, discovers the fragments of a broken family and, despite her sweet biopic traps, doesn’t shy away from the pressures of grief over a marriage, and even Dahl’s relationship with her other children Isabella Jonsson is particularly good as a than Tessa, who bristles with anger that she can never live up to how her father felt for Olivia

Bonneville does a solid job of navigating Dahl’s contradictions He sparkles with anger in the most tense scenes, but also bursts with avuncular charm when the occasion calls for it Sometimes his comfy sweaters and scintillating warmth are almost similar in the tone of Tom Hanks’ work in A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood, and it’s never a bad thing to remember Hawes, meanwhile, is excellent as an inter-role Neal, although her role is baffling. , considering that the source material is not a biography of Dahl, but that of Neal She spends most of the second half of the film playing against a horrific green screen version of Los Angeles from the 1960s.

But it’s the first half of the movie that really works, sketching the family bliss of the Dahl’s rural escape, then forcing the grief into it with wild energy Graham Frake’s sunny cinematography palette visibly darkens when tragedy strikes and, while a certain visual symbolism involving birds lands as loudly as Dahl’s references, there is an emotional truth to the storytelling that is definitely worth appreciating Debbie’s score Wiseman offers evocative and poignant accompaniment to the opening credits, but unfortunately serves as a clumsy and heavy emotional panel for much of the narrative

Anyone hoping for a film that reveals Dahl’s most disturbing elements – his love of alcohol never shows up as much as it initially seems likely, and there is no mention of his heinous anti-Semitic views – will be disappointed by To Olivia But it’s a compelling and poignant portrayal of heartbreak, though it rather seems to lack some sharp edges that could have made it truly memorable This isn’t the definitive Dahl biopic that many people expected, but it was always something more focused – and it does this job well, although it’s not spectacular

Tom Beasley is a Freelance Film Journalist and Wrestling Fan Follow him on Twitter via @TomJBeasley for movie opinions, wrestling tips and puns

Filed Under: Movies, Reviews, Tom Beasley Tagged With: Biopic, Bodhi Marsan, Conleth Hill, Darcey Ewart, Hugh Bonneville, Isabella Jonsson, John Hay, Keeley Hawes, Roald Dahl, Sam Heughan, To Olivia

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Roald Dahl, Patricia Neal, Hugh Bonneville, Keeley Hawes

Ebene News – GB – Film review – To Olivia (2021)

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