(KCBS) – KCBS Entertainment Editor Jan Wahl reviews “Hyde Park on the Hudson,” starring Bill Murray and Laura Linley, about the bizarre sexual relationship between FDR and Margaret Stuckley in 1939. Also Jan reviews “Any Day Now” starring Alan Cumming and “The Matchmaker.”
KCBS Entertainment Reporter Jan Wahl:
ANY DAY NOW (R)
Alan Cumming has long been a celebrated actor, thanks to stellar performances in everything from Cabaret to The Good Wife to his introductions of Masterpiece Theatre. Now, he stars in this story of love, acceptance and family. When a handicapped child (Isaac Leyva) is abandoned by his mother, a gay couple is determined to adopt him so they can give him the family he never had. Authorities decide the men must fight the legal system.
Touching, thoughtful, beautifully acted. Directed by Travis Fine from a true story.
HYDE PARK ON THE HUDSON (R)
It’s a single weekend in June 1939. President and First Lady Roosevelt are hosting the King and Queen of England at the Roosevelt upstate New York estate. This would have been interesting on its own, had Franklin and Eleanor been given depth and reality. Instead, most of the movie is about FDR as a lecherous manipulator and Eleanor is only present for about five minutes. The female we follow in this shallow and insulting movie is FDR’s cousin, played as bland and clueless by Laura Linley. Bill Murray is fine as FDR but the rest of the movie turns what could have been smart and entertaining into a useless soap opera.
THE MATCHMAKER (NR – w/ English Subtitles)
The year is 1968, and we’re in a seedy quarter of Haifa, Israel. In this touching drama, we meet a mysterious, large man with a scarred face who walks with a cane. He has an unusual profession: he finds romantic matches for “special people.” He enlists the help of a teenage boy and a woman who gives dating lessons and runs an illegal gambling club.
This movie was nominated for seven Israeli Oscars, not a surprise since it is full of heart and depth.
You can hear KCBS Entertainment Editor Jan Wahl’s movie reviews on KCBS All News 740AM and 106.9FM Fridays at 8:53am & 4:53pm.
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