20150430: Comedy Review--the grand seduction

The Grand Seduction
  1. Fundamentals, reception.
    1. Canadian live action feature length film, 2014, PG-13, 113 minutes, comedy, remake.
    2. IMDB: 7.0/10.0 from 7,906 audience ratings.
    3. Rotten Tomatoes: 59% on the meter; % liked it from 5,810 audience ratings.
    4. Netflix: 3.8/5.0 from 158,671 audience ratings.
    5. Directed by: Don McKellar.  Written by: Ken Scott, Michael Dowse.
    6. Starring: Brendon Gleeson as Murray French, Taylor Kitsch as Paul Lewis MD, Gordon Pinsent as Simon, Liane Balaban as Kathleen. 
    7. Production cost: (IMDb) 12.7 million USD.
    8. Revenues: (Box Office Mojo) States, 3.43 million USD (100%).

  2. Setup and Plot
    1. This is a remake of the French Canadian film Seducing Doctor Lewis (2003), original title La grande seduction, directed by Jean-Francoise Pouliot, filmed in New Brunswick.

    2. The current film is set in the fictional fishing village of Tickle Head on the coast of Newfoundland, Canada.  The film's opening details 'the way it used to be', with hard work, enough rewards, and life with a purpose.  Then the movie jumps to the present, where all the able-bodied men are on welfare from the government.  The sense of purpose, at least, has been lost.

    3. Our protagonist, Murray, has been collecting welfare checks and losing self-esteem for some time.  The mayor has a tentative deal with an oil sludge reclamation company, which will go forward provided the town has a resident physician.  The mayor takes a job in Toronto; by arranged chance, he intercepts a physician, Paul Lewis, and blackmails him into coming to Tickle Head for a month.

    4. While Paul is on the way, Murray and company spruce up the town to give Paul a good impression.  The lies do not end there, by not by any means.

    5. Will their plan actually work?

  3. Conclusions
    1. Some of the bits are funny, such as the locals trying to learn cricket post haste.  The sentiment at the end was carried off fairly well.

    2. One line summary: Politics of scarcity in Newfoundland fishing village.

    3. Six of ten

  4. Scores
    1. Cinematography: 9/10 Well done; fine natural scenery.

    2. Sound: 9/10 No problems.  Much of the music seemed appropriate.

    3. Acting: 6/10 Brendon Gleeson, Taylor Kitsch, and Gordon Pinsent were fine.

    4. Screenplay: 5/10 It's a remake.  Movies about the consequences of lying are grating.