De-lovely

De-lovely

3.7 11
Director: Irwin Winkler, Kevin Kline, Ashley Judd, Jonathan Pryce

Cast: Irwin Winkler, Kevin Kline, Ashley Judd, Jonathan Pryce

     
 

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The public and private lives of famed songwriter Cole Porter are both explored in this musical drama, in which the aging Porter (played by Kevin Kline) looks back on his life while watching a rehearsal of a stage musical based on his story. As Porter compares notes on the play with director Gabe (Jonathan Pryce), he shares thoughts on his rise to fame in the mid-'20s,

Overview

The public and private lives of famed songwriter Cole Porter are both explored in this musical drama, in which the aging Porter (played by Kevin Kline) looks back on his life while watching a rehearsal of a stage musical based on his story. As Porter compares notes on the play with director Gabe (Jonathan Pryce), he shares thoughts on his rise to fame in the mid-'20s, writing witty and sophisticated tunes for a string of successful Broadway musicals. Porter seemed to be living a charmed life when he met Linda Thomas (Ashley Judd), a beautiful American woman who, like Porter, was enjoying a sojourn in Paris following the collapse of her first marriage. Thomas is immediately taken with Porter, whose intelligence and charm is a welcome change after her brutal first husband, and the two discover they share a remarkable understanding of one another. Porter and Thomas marry, even though she's aware that her new husband is gay; Thomas is willing to forgive Porter's indiscretions with other men in favor of the emotional support he brings her. However, as the years wear on and the couple takes up residence in Hollywood as Porter begins writing tunes for motion pictures, Thomas finds Porter drifting away from her as his liaisons become more frequent and more serious. Then tragedy enters their life when Porter loses the use of his legs in a riding accident and Thomas is diagnosed with cancer. De-Lovely features a number of noted pop singers interpreting classic songs from Porter's catalog, including Diana Krall, Sheryl Crow, Alanis Morissette, Elvis Costello, Robbie Williams, Mick Hucknall, and others.

Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - Ed Hulse
By all accounts, songwriter Cole Porter was just as charming and sophisticated as the lyrics he wrote for such classic pop tunes as “Night and Day,” “You’re the Top,” “Begin the Beguine,” and “It’s De-Lovely,” all of which are heard in this elaborately mounted biographical film. But Porter, who spent his last 27 years crippled and in pain from injuries sustained in a riding accident, was a man of great contradictions. For instance, despite his obvious affections for Linda Lee Thomas, the wealthy socialite to whom he remained married, he continued to pursue male lovers. Costars Kevin Kline and Ashley Judd adroitly capture Cole and Linda’s dynamic here, playing the roles very much like the protagonists in a Depression-era stage musical or a Fred Astaire-Ginger Rogers movie. They glide gracefully and seemingly effortlessly through life, enjoying the finest of everything and numbering among their friends many of the most famous and fascinating people of the pre-World War II era. Yet Cole has needs that Linda cannot meet; it’s a measure of their worldliness that she tolerates his dalliances because she’d rather have him some of the time than not at all. Screenwriter Jay Cocks employs an endearingly corny device to tell Cole’s story: The tunesmith’s life unfolds as a series of scenes rehearsed on a heavenly stage under the direction of an angel (played by Jonathan Pryce). In many respects, filmmaker Irwin Winkler -- who previously directed Kline in Life as a House -- re-creates the period accurately, though the use of contemporary pop artists (Alanis Morissette, Elvis Costello, Sheryl Crow) is a jarringly discordant note in the otherwise pitch-perfect replication of a bygone era. That aside, De-Lovely is as delightful and delicious as you could hope.

Product Details

Release Date:
12/21/2004
UPC:
0883904126577
Original Release:
2004
Source:
Mgm (Video & Dvd)

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Kevin Kline Cole Porter
Ashley Judd Linda Lee Porter
Jonathan Pryce Gabe
Kevin McNally Gerald Murphy
Alan Corduner Monty Woolley
Sandra Nelson Sara Murphy
Keith Allen Irving Berlin
James Wilby Edward Thomas
Kevin McKidd Bobby Reed
Richard Dillane Bill Wrather
Edward Baker-Duly Boris Kochno
Robbie Williams Musical Performer
Leopold Lemarchand Musical Performer
Elvis Costello Musical Performer
Alanis Morissette Musical Performer
John Barrowman Musical Performer
Caroline O'Connor Musical Performer
Sheryl Crow Musical Performer
Mick Hucknall Musical Performer
Diana Krall Musical Performer
Vivian Green Musical Performer
Lara Fabian Musical Performer
Mario Frangoulis Musical Performer
Natalie Cole Musical Performer
Angie Hill Ellin Berlin
Peter Polycarpou Louis B. Mayer
Nicola Dawn Actor
Lemar Obika Actor
Gene Shalit Actor

Technical Credits
Irwin Winkler Director,Producer
John Bush Set Decoration/Design
Simon Channing-Williams Executive Producer
Jay Cocks Screenwriter
Rob Cowan Producer
Gail Egan Executive Producer
Stephen Endelman Musical Arrangement
Tim Fraser Sound/Sound Designer
Tony Gibbs Editor
Nina Gold Casting
John Hill Art Director
Francesca Jaynes Choreography
Julie Monroe Editor
Sarah Monzani Makeup
Tony Pierce-Roberts Cinematographer
Josh Robertson Asst. Director
Eve Stewart Production Designer
Charles Winkler Producer
Janty Yates Costumes/Costume Designer

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3.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 11 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
HAVE SEEN IT 3 TIMES AND I JUST ORDERED THE DVD. BEAUTIFULLY DONE! IT IS NOT A REMAKE OF NIGHT AND DAY (COLE PORTERS BIOGRAPHY)WHICH I HAD LIKED WHEN I SAW IT BY CARY GRANT, BUT A MORE TRUTHFUL AND ROMANTIC VIEW OF WHAT COLE WAS REALLY LIKE AND HIS INCREDIBLE RELATIONSHIP WITH HIS WIFE. HAD ME IN TEARS! GOT THE MUSIC CD AND HAVE NOT STOP PLAYING IT. WONDERFUL MUSIC,ALTHOUGH IT MIGHT NOT APPEAL TO THE YOUNGER GENERATION WITH NO APPRECIATION FOR GOOD MUSIC AND GREAT LYRICS.
sj-w More than 1 year ago
This is one of my favorite movies. The music is great, and so are the actors. Is anyone old enough to remember the movie with Cary Grant? I laugh when I compare the two. "De-Lovely" is very well done and leaves me a bit teary at the end every time I watch it. I highly recommend it.
llamamia More than 1 year ago
This is an exceptional movie from beginning to end. Kevin Kline does a superb job of portraying the complex musical genius of Cole Porter and Ashley Judd is very convincing as Porter's wife & Muse, Linda. Great chemistry between them. I loved the flashback technique & found it added depth to the biography. I thought the bisexuality of Porter was handled with delicacy & a bit of humor. And, of course, this is all about Cole Porter's beautiful music with meaningful lyrics that live on today & will for generations to come. I purchased the DVD shortly after seeing the movie back in 2004 & watch it often. I highly recommend this film to anyone who enjoys a movie with substance & can appreciate the incredible music from one of our great songwriters.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I liked this movie, I thought it was good and I liked the singing and dancing as well as the dramtic scenes. Kevin Kline and Ashley Judd were both great. Personally I liked this movie more than the movie Beyond the Sea which to me seemed to unoriginally copy the idea of using dramatic scenes along with a musical singing and dancing fantasy sequence format that was done in De-Lovely.
Readibus_Criticus More than 1 year ago
Love the story and the music. The actors did great!
Guest More than 1 year ago
I've been avoiding writing a review of this film, but it must be done. In a phrase, what were they trying to do here? We were told from the trailers and the pre-release reviews that the movie (originally dubbed 'Just One of Those Things') would indeed reveal the bi-sexual aspect of Cole Porter's private life. Ok- no problem, but ultimately what was the character of this movie? Was it supposed to be a musical or a fanatasy or a drama or what? To begin, having Kevin Klein (Porter) looking in upon his life's events from heaven(?) was a needless and distracting device- fantasy. Presumably providing dreamlike, ethereal quality, it added nothing to the film except confusion. Secondly, the segues (if we can call them that) between scenes and/or points in Porter's life defied any sense of context. The viewer is pulled from one time and location to another, almost without reference (the post-life Porter actually could have assisted here by narrating- but for that purpose he was not utilized?!!)-drama? Then, in what was, of course, expected, there was plenty of playing and singing of Porter's compositions. Sadly, though, the songs were often relegated to the background (of the on-again, off-again sexual twists)when they should have been the focus of a scene- musical? Much can be said pro and con about having contemporary stars interpreting 'tween the wars classics, but I think the 'Moulin-Rouge' approach was a real detriment. I like a number of the performers, especially Lara Fabian, Robin Williams, and Natalie Cole, all of whom have proved their worth on period pieces before, but that approach didn't work very well here, particularly when the songs, as I said, were often an afterthought in the scenes. An exception was the finale, but that unfortunately was more reminiscent of a George M. Cohan review than a homage to a great song writer. Indeed, little attention is actually paid to explaining the composer's genius; instead we are constantly reminded, though judgement is reserved, of his male and female affairs. Altogether, this was a mess. Criticism can certainly be aimed at the original Cole Porter movie with Cary Grant for not being historical(sexually)accurate or being too melodramatic, but it sure beat the heck out of this. Despite valiant efforts from Klein and Ashley Judd (who played the female love interest), there's not much here to praise. The direction, editing and script were simply horrid. And- what was the concept?? My advice: Save your money.
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WickedKim More than 1 year ago
One of the most boring movies I've watched. Don't waste your time.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Although the music and acting was superb, the movie as a whole was somewhat trite and dull.