24 January, 2010

The Duchess Observes . . .

Crazy Heart

Yesterday, post-Chinese foot massage (thanks N!), the Duchess took in a matinee showing of Crazy Heart starring Jeff Bridges. Mr. Bridges recently won a Golden Globes award for Best Performance by an Actor in a Movie - Drama, and just last night took home the Screen Actors Guild award for Best Male Actor in a movie.

In Crazy Heart, Mr. Bridges plays down-on-his-luck (is there any other kind?) country music singer Otis "Bad" Blake, who snakes his way across the American southwest as he leaps from barroom stool to barroom stool, trying to make a buck on the glory of songs that were successful long ago. His only friend appears to be a bottle of McClure's Kentucky Bourbon whiskey (a fictional label as we all know) and his old Fender guitar.

After a dusty, hard night in Pueblo, Colorado, Bad Blake heads for Santa Fe where he is set to perform in a downtown saloon for two nights. On the first night there, luckily, he meets local reporter Jean ("Jeanie") Craddock, an unimpeachable single mother who straddles that dramatic line between following her passion (old-timey country music, apparently) and caring for her family (responsible job at newspaper -- check!). And so the story goes, Bad and Jeanie fall madly for one another, a tumble that ultimately yields the heartbreak necessary for the perfect country and western song ("May the circle be unbroken, by and by, Lord, by and by").

Now, readers, do not misperceive the Duchess -- she is a devoted Jeff Bridges fan, and this was a mighty fine performance. But could we do a little better than continuing with our one-dimensional portrayals of country singers, of single mothers, of alcoholics? Is that too much to ask?

Luckily Colin Farrell makes a welcome appearance as country star/eye candy Tommy Sweet. Indeed.

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