funny and poignant

We went to see Heartbreak Hotel (in Swedish, Italian, French and English with English subtitles) at the Somerville expecting it to be a bit of light relief between the films that we had seen so far as part of the Festival of Perth, and the one that is showing next week.

Although it has been reviewed as “Don’t let the subtitles fool you; this isn’t a high-brow film by any means. In fact, it’s a pretty conventional chick-flick.” — Andrew Hedley, Certainly their is nothing positive to say about the male characters, but I feel this does not deflect from the many poignant and funny scenes in the film.

The Lumière Reader has an all encompassing review (with spoilers) and there are links to the trailer from the official site. From the trailer we saw at the Somerville, I expected it to be a lot more upbeat and a lot funnier.

It is slow in parts, but this I feel was necessary to develop the characters and their relationships with the people around them. But all through the film there were quips that made me laugh and scenes that gave me pause for thought.

I thought the best scene was that between Gudrun (Maria Lundqvist), Elizabeth (Helena Bergström), and Gudrun’s daughter Liselotte (Erica Braun), in the Heartbreak Hotel’s ladies room. Although Liselotte encouraged her mother to get out, dance, have a drink, and have fun, she is extremely embarrassed when her mother is doing just that and at the venue she hangs out. Gudrun and Maria certainly win the upperhand of this argument. Essentially, Gudrun and Elizabeth argued that no matter what your age or even if you have children, if you want to go out and have fun you can do just that. And they continue to do so.

The scene leading up to the wedding of Elizabeth’s son where Elizabeth meets Gudrun for the first time with an exchange of words ‘Shove it up your arse!’ and ‘Fucking cow!’, and the wedding ceremony I think were the funniest.

Whoever wrote the words for the wedding ceremony had a wicked sense of humour or an evil streak. “Till Death Us Do Part” could just as easily have been “Till You Reach 40” or “Till I reach 50”, “Till The Kids Leave Home”, “Till I Meet Somebody Else” or “Till We’ve Been Together Long Enough For Me To Discover Who You Really Are”. — SF International


One thought on “funny and poignant

  1. Pingback: January reads « dilettante

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