Written by / 1/06/2013 / No comments / , , ,

BILL MURRAY IN HYDE PARK ON HUDSON

year: 2012 cast: Bill Murray, Laura Linney, Samuel Wes, Elizabeth Marvel rating: *
In this so-called “biopic” about one of America's most important Presidents, Franklin Delano Roosevelt, and his affair with his cousin Daisy, Bill Murray does a nice job as the down to earth FDR, a man who, despite a suffering country looking to him for answers during the Depression, enjoys collecting stamps and… women.

There’s one worthy scene as FDR meets the stuttering King of England. Although Roosevelt can’t use his legs he moves across the room, table to table, with use of his arms to prove a point: the people you lead aren’t hindered by your shortcomings. Other than that, the visit of the King and Queen centers on the couple holed up in their room, stressing out that FDR plans on serving hotdogs during an upcoming picnic. The romance between FDR and Daisy, which is how the film is promoted and described, is but a periphrial distraction. Their relationship during the first fifteen minutes consists of driving down flowery roads in the location of Hyde Park, New York.

Laura Linney is an otherwise good actress but her doe-eyed performance lacks compassion and overall purpose. Her fascination with the President is never quite clear. Meanwhile, the director seems more interested in fancy shots and lovely location than telling a coherent story, historical or otherwise... The characters all seem part of a bland stage play – and there isn't a plot in sight for miles, in any direction. Bill Murray, on the other hand, does accomplish the feat of vanishing into the role. Too bad there’s nothing backing him up along the way.
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