In England in the early 1930s, twenty-year-old Flora Poste, recently orphaned, and left with only one hundred pounds a year, goes to stay with distant relatives on Cold Comfort Farm. Everyone on the gloomy farm is completely around the twist, but Flora tries to sort everything out.Written by
John Oswalt <email@example.com>
Absolutely terrific movie is an interesting take on the popular theme of people who come into a mess of unhappiness and create joy. Often these movies rely on a central character who is magical, or has great charm and a love for life, but Flora achieves her ends through pure English practicality, and it is very amusing to see someone approaching misery as a mess to be cleaned up. Flora, excellently portrayed by Beckinsale, is pretentious and rather smug but also well-meaning and likable. In a way she seems to be the personification of British imperialism, although that's probably a bit of a stretch.
Much of the fun of the movie is the ridiculous level of misery and squalor represented by Cold Comfort Farm, which is a parody of the sort of grim worlds one can find from writers like Dickens. Eileen Atkins does a great job, but then they all do. The only real weak point in the movie is Mybug, who seems completely unnecessary. Perhaps he was a significant character who served some purpose in the novel, but here he is just this annoying peripheral character, and had he been cut entirely out of the movie it would have been all the better for it (although I generally like Stephen Fry). In spite of that, an excellent film.
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