Driving Miss Daisy

There are better places to read reviews of Hyde Park on the Hudson, about the first-ever visit by England’s king and queen, to America, in 1939, to ask Franklin Delano Roosevelt for America’s assistance in the impending war with Germany.

It is as weird a movie as I’ve seen in a long time. Bill Murray is a charmer as FDR, but Laura Linney is pretty much wasted in a role as FDR’s distant cousin, Daisy, who becomes a mistress. The movie is slow and the cinematography gets in the way with all this weird foreground-background focusing.  Unfortunately, the most memorable part of the movie is also the worst: it’s the most uncomfortable car ride I’ve ever seen on film, culminating with Daisy servicing Franklin, the car bouncing jauntily. It was awful, and had me cringing every time Murray drove in the rest of the movie (which was often).

Hyde Park on the Hudson is as weird a movie as I’ve seen in a long time

Speaking of sexually repressed guys, Virginia and I saw Hitchcock last weekend. It’s the re-telling of the making of Psycho, and Hellen Mirren is very good as Hitchcock’s wife, as are the actors who play Anthony Perkins and Janet Leigh (Scarlett Johannson). Not bad, but it seemed to score only a glancing blow on the mordant wit of the great director. He was funnier than Anthony Hopkins, from what I remember of late-night re-runs of his TV show when I was a wee lad.

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