Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day
Directed by: Bharat Nalluri
Starring: Francis McDormand,
Amy Adams and Lee Pace.
It is rather unfortunate in the world of movies when the new year rolls around. It seems that the first few months (January, February and March) seem to be the time of year reserved for crappy and forgettable movies just as October, November and December are generally the time for the best movies of the year and typically Oscar contenders. However, Miss Pettigrew is an exception.
The story of Miss Pettigrew is not a particularly difficult one; the title character, Miss Pettigrew(A lovely Francis McDormand) is a dowdy governess who is not very good at her profession. Seeking a job that will keep her off the streets and away from the homeless shelters, Pettigrew enlists as the caretaker of whom she thinks is a mother. The so called "mother" Delysia Lafosse(A delightful Amy Adams) is in fact an aspiring actress who is, at the moment, juggling men. In a quick paced and upbeat manner, we are introduced to the men in Delysia's life; there's the foolish playwright Phil, Nick who owns a swanky apartment and is quite rich, and finally, Michael(Lee Pace getting work!) a musician who had a run in with the law and is heading to America. In the course of the day, we follow Delysia and Miss Pettigrew as they attend a lingerie show, give Pettigrew a make over and still have time for a party.
With its sharp dialogue, it's stunning sets and is period clothing, Miss Pettigrew successfully manages to capture the humor and the feel of British farce from the 1930's-40's. In fact, the film takes place during the early days of WWII, during a time where people feared war and didn't know what would happen or how many lives we would lose. But since the movie is usually bubbly and upbeat, it is able to tear away from being a melodramatic war drama(Which is by all means not the intention of the director).
While it might not be perfect, Miss Pettigrew is undeniably a fun film and a good one to see if looking for a diversion from fighting cavemen or the latest entry in the Dance porn genre. And that is much more then a relief.