Blanche DuBois lives!
The obscenely wealthy via marriage Jasmine (Blanchett) arrives at her sister Ginger’s (Hawkins) small San Francisco apartment to overcome the ordeal of having her life shattered. Her husband Hal (Baldwin) was a shady businessman and has been jailed for his crimes. Jasmine’s entire life has been seized…….all her cash, jewels, homes, everything……. has all gone to Uncle Sam. She is penniless and is recovering from a nervous breakdown.
For her part, Ginger is juggling a full time job, her 2 young sons (Rutherford and Jenks), an ex husband Augie (Clay) and new boyfriend Chili (Cannavale). While everyone warns her against trusting Jasmine, she refuses to hear ill of her adored sister and does her best to support the fragile woman.
Jasmine takes a receptionist job and starts to learn to use a computer in the hope of returning to school. She struggles continuously with feeling this is all so beneath her. She meets the upwardly mobile Dwight (Sarsgaard) and even Ginger dips her toes into the dangerous sea of infidelity. Things appear to be changing for the sisters but life is always full of surprises.
Blanchett is extraordinary as
Blanche DuBois Jasmine. Woody Allen is, of course, known for writing neurotic women but this one is a little different. Well she is played a little differently. The entire movie is more than a nod to A Streetcar Named Desire and Blanchett plays Jasmine straight, exquisitely nuanced and vibrating with nervous tension. There is no humour here……only a deeply fragile, broken woman. Jasmine drifts in and out of her memories of the life taken from her. She talks to herself, almost as a form of self soothing. If she was a less neurotic person, she may take to her bed with a weepy girlie DVD and a large box of Maltesers.
Hawkins is wonderful as
Stella Ginger. She is Mother Earth to her sister’s stars. She is adored and loved by all, including the singlet-wearing, hard talking, hyper masculine Stanley Kowalski Chili. The pair is in love and about to move in together but Jasmine exposes Ginger to another world and Ginger falls prey to it’s shiny temptations. The only thing missing is that famous impassioned and heart wrenching Steeeeelllllllllllllllaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa!!
This move was divine, absolutely divine. Blanchett must receive an Academy Award nomination for this role. She has given Allen’s newest anti-heroine an exquisite life and this is his best film in years. Hopefully, the positive reactions and reviews will see it achieve wider success and attract broader appeal. And Alec Baldwin……WOW!!! This is the Alec Baldwin I used to know….. gorgeous with a slightly sleazy vibe. Delicious.
Please do go and see this film. Treat yourself to a wonderful movie with the eternally popular love triangle. The love triangle shifts and moves constantly but her, that’s half the fun.
Love Flick xx
Director : Woody Allen
Starring : Cate Blanchett, Alec Baldwin, Sally Hawkins. Peter Sarsgaard, Andrew Dice Clay, Louis C.K., Bobby Cannavale, Max Rutherford, Daniel Jenks
Running Time : 98 minutes
Release Date : In Cinemas Now …