an A UNITED KINGDOM musing
I was expecting a solid movie, and I was more than pleased. The true story is touching and important, and the film mainly follows the aftermath of their meet-cute and subsequent wedding. (They meet and connect instantly, and you buy it because of the leads’ chemistry.) It chronicles how their union has the potential to become world-changing politically, and how far governments can go just to make these two people so unhappy.
Filmmaking-wise, there’s not so much innovation here. It’s serviceably made, and weirdly edited sometimes, with fade outs mid-conversations. You get the normal trademarks of the true story racism drama, including Draco Malfoy himself (Tom Felton) being an ass as he does so well. The cinematography is pretty good too, no matter how relatively conventional it is, switching between gloomy blues and grey for its London settings with a dusty red for Botswana.
But the movie thrives on drawing from the historical story, and with David Oyelowo and Rosamund Pike giving their all (without overacting, mind you). Oyelowo gives one of the best, powerful monologues I’ve seen which is in most of the trailers, but plays even better in the movie, and probably going to be a contender for Best Monologue/Scene in next year’s Marzon-YEAH! Awards.
In a way, this is like the British/international version of LOVING, with lesser direction but better acting performances. It’s perfectly solid, but incredibly moving.
RATING: DIDN'T WASTE MY MONEY
(refer to my rating system here)
P.S. At my screening, David Oyelowo and director Amma Asante participated in a Q&A after the film, and I was able to get a picture with Mr. Oyelowo, who also played Martin Luther King, Jr. in SELMA!