Tea at four. Dinner at eight. Murder at midnight.
Multiple storylined drama set in 1932, showing the lives of upstairs guest and downstairs servants at a party in a country house in England.
The best directed, superbly acted, stunningly scripted, intelligent, socially satirical and most beautifully shot cup of Earl Grey I've ever had.
After a bunch of so-so and some downright crappy late 90s films, Altman proved with Gosford Park that he was still able to pull off complex, high quality cinema. It is a brilliant composition that maintains a constant flow from the first frame to the last, gliding in a continuous motion through the mansion and its surroundings, smoothly alternating between documenting crowds, smaller groups, couples and individuals.
It is also a distinct Altman product in the way it doesn't follow the traditional rules for a whodunnit. Normally after a murder is committed, the focus shifts from presenting the motives of the attendees to an investigation, but Altman being Altman, that never happens here. Instead the investigator is presented as a…
Working with what might be the finest ensemble cast I've encountered, Robert Altman once more manages to strike gold, creating a wickedly funny social satire with a relevance that never feels confined to the period setting as is the case with so many similar films. With the likes of Maggie Smith, Michael Gambon, Clive Owen, Charles Dance, Stephen Fry, Richard E. Grant, Kelly MacDonald, Helen Mirren, Emily Watson et al doing such stellar work, who should it be that steals the show but Mr Bob Balaban, somehow combining the nerdy type he plays in the Christopher Guest films with a more aggressive Hollywood producer role too (side note: he was Oscar nominated for producing this, about damn time). The laughs…
For those of us born and bred at the hand of Agatha Christie's works, whodunnits in general and every other kind of detective fiction, there's not much mystery to Robert Altman's Gosford Park. It's simply to easy to see through for that to be the case.
However. There's a lot to be said about the more general drama and gossip of if all, as it portrays life in Britain in the early 1930s amongst both servants and the upper snobs. With a fantastic ensemble, Altman get to deliver a very unique and intriguing portrait of life at Gosford Park during a shooting party weekend. It's not enough to make this a great movie, but certainly more than enough to make…
At the beginning it looks like that Robert Altman’s Gosford Park is a mixture of Kazuo Ishiguro’s The Remains of the Day and some of Agatha Christie’s novels. It is set in a countryside noble house with footmen, servants, loyal butlers and we spend some important time with people “below stairs” as the movie goes on, it chooses an innocent young hand maid to tell its story and that very hand maid is the one who finally gets to the bottom of the mystery. Here servants are as important as Lords and Ladies and one can argue that they are the main characters. And like Agatha Christie’s Death on the Nile we have a group of high class people who…
This is a long film, with a TON of characters. The fact that Altman, Balaban and Fellowes succeed in making them all seem different, not to mention make you remember (sort of) who they all are, including their backstories, is astonishing. And the cast they've assembled is nothing short of amazing in itself; everyone from Clive Owen and Maggie Smith to Ryan Phillippe, Michael Gambon, Stephen Fry, Charles Dance, Tom Hollander, Helen Mirren... You get the picture.
It's a very relaxed film, drippling out plot-points and set-ups while you're not neccesarily paying strict attention. The tons of plotlines pretty much come together towards the end, which in itself is quite a feat.
Altman crea un giallo 'alla Agatha Christie', mostrando la diversità sociale senza pietà, e senza filtri. Un Capolavoro.
Probably Altman's most austere and balanced work. Smartly leaves his bawdiest tendencies in America where they belong. Seems like dialing back the smart-ass also produces a result that looks less like an Altman film, but still feels like one. I used to think that Altman was no good at ending movies. I still feel this in some cases (NASHVILLE being the toughest to swallow because the rest is perfect), but am starting to get over it. GP's ending isn't written particularly well, but it's shot in a way that glides through the dangerous moments. I guess I'm of the opinion that the quieter, the better, when it comes to Altman finales.
Robert Altman's last great film, Gosford Park features the greatest assembly of British actors outside of a Harry Potter movie, with Helen Mirren, Maggie Smith, Clive Owen, Michael Gambon, Charles Dance, Emily Watson, to name but a few. A dinner party of upper class types at the titular residence turns when a murder occurs. Part murder mystery, part costume drama, part comedy, Gosford Park is more than it initially seems and Altman and writer Julian Fellowes have fun playing with convention and audience expectations. It takes unexpected paths at times, and is a real treat to watch unfold. Not the fusty, austere "sunday night on the BBC" type of film you may think, this is actually a little more subversive and interesting than you might expect, with sharp writing, superb acting across the board (including an impressive performance from Ryan Phillipe!) and Altman utilising his full bag of tricks, playing with sound and moving his camera around like a maestro.
Fantastic cast. Dames Atkins and Mirren shine.
"Gosford Park" would have been a fine country-house murder mystery with a class cast if it hadn't tripped itself up by one thing - having one of the characters being Ivor Novello, the real actor/composer of the 20s/30s and then bending facts so he is singing songs he hadn't written in the year the film was set (the fact that he even sings at all is amusing - as any Novello devotee will know he didn't have much of a voice and certainly not of a calibre to entertain a roomful of guests and charm the servants). So that was a minor irritation, despite Jeremy Northam doing his best.
The other cast members - Michael Gambon, Kristin Scott-Thomas, Maggie Smith,…
One of my favorite "modern" Altman's. Details the comings and goings between upstairs and downstairs of a British estate during a dinner party in the 1920's. When someone is murdered things get complicated.
Every cast member is either a legendary established British actor or a young up and comer ready for bigger things. Screenwriter Julien Fellows would go on to create the popular hit Downton Abbey.
Well, this is a great costume drama, brilliant cast and gripping from the get go. Written by the Julian Fellows who writes and created Downton Abbey, is in very similar tones. But so much better.
This really is the perfect film.
My emotions fervently cycled watching Robert Altman's Gosford Park. For the first half-hour, I found myself struggling to engage with the very loose narrative, eclectic characters, and dry, relatively ordinary conversations that lacked commonality or relatability on my behalf. After half-an-hour or so, Altman's motives became more clear to me. After an hour and a half, they were beyond crystal. Then the last forty-eight minutes became something of a slog for the mind and the heart.
Altman's grandscale film will wow some people, bore others, alienate, detach, enchant, invigorate, and intrigue - some, like me, will experience all of those at least once - in its 138-minute runtime. A film like this deserved praise alone because its craft will be…