When snooty, stick-up-her-butt Sandra discovers that her husband is cheating on her just as they were about to retire — something Sandra has been planning for the past 35 years — she escapes from her English countryside manor to London, to the cosy, cramped public-housing flat of the freespirited sister, Bif, she hasn’t seen in decades. Sandra seems pretty awful at first, just plain horrible and rude even as she busts her way into Bif’s life uninvited, and precisely as we’re about to grumble, “Who the hell do you think you are?” Bif does so herself. Hooray! That sets the stage for the tart, sharp, but ultimately life-affirming dramedy to come, one that is slightly more edgy and far less predictable than it probably has any right to be.
A further wonder of Finding Your Feet, from Wimbledon director Richard Loncraine, is that it’s easy to imagine either of his two magnificent stars, Celia Imrie and Imelda Staunton, in either role. Staunton (not that it matters, but she plays Sandra) and Imrie (as Bif) shape the surface clichés of both characters into complex, warm portraits of women struggling with the challenges of later life, but also rejoicing in the freedom that comes with throwing off the assumptions of others and ensuring that they’re making the most of the years they have left... though they may decide they want different things out of them. (Screenwriters Nick Moorcroft and Meg Leonard deserve some of the credit, too, of course.)
Uplifting yet never sappy, and with a cast including the always entertaining Timothy Spall and Joanna Lumley, this is an unexpected treat.
‘Finding Your Feet’ is in limited release in the US and Canada, and in wide release in the UK.
Much more at FlickFilosopher.com on the web!