Posted January 14, 2013 by Misha Wallace - Social Media Editor in DVD/Blu-ray
 
 

Cheerful Weather For The Wedding


Cheerful Weather for the Wedding gives a glimpse of one day in the lives of a 1930s upper-class family.

Cheerful
Weather for the Wedding gives a glimpse of one day in the lives of a 1930s
upper-class family.
Past
lovers, family life and polite society are the prevalent themes in this
adaptation of Julia Strachey’s
novel.

In the scenic rural setting of Wiltshire in 1932 an upper
class country household begins preparation for a wedding taking place that
day. As the commotion ensues downstairs,
soon to be bride Dolly (Felicity Jones)
hides out in her bedroom above, contemplating her impending marriage whilst
harbouring thoughts and feelings for another man she once loved who left the
previous summer on an expedition.
But when this man, Joseph (Luke
Treadaway
), appears at the house that same morning, Dolly must decide
whether to go ahead with her marriage of convention or follow her heart.

Jones’ Dolly is pretty, headstrong and at times aloof. Despite the fact it is her wedding day,
she comes across as impassive and blasé whilst everyone fusses around her. Even before Joseph arrives, you can
tell from the outset that her heart is not really in it and she is playing for
time. She dismissively informs her
housekeeper that she has scuffed her satin wedding shoes by wearing them the
night before, wedding guests hunt for her lost wedding ring in the lounge and
the bouquet is ‘somewhere’ in the kitchen. The arrival of Joseph alters her mood to agitation and
confusion and so she sits in her room in her wedding finery swigging brandy
from the bottle as she reminisces about their history. A series of flashbacks depict their
romance, with their happy times consisting of down to earth activities of countryside
cycles, barn dances and rowing on the lake. Their love is convincing in these glimpses and Joseph’s
turmoil is clear as he waits for Dolly downstairs. However, although her mother is anxious at the situation, Dolly’s
feelings do not seem as powerful as that of her former lover and so we are met
with something of an anti-climax.

Donald Rice, son of renowned
composer Sir Tim Rice brings us
Cheerful Weather as his directorial debut. Most of the light-hearted comedy comes from the family
conflict, whispered insults and chaos that transpire at the typical family
wedding. Kitty is wrongly informed
about how to tell the difference between two male twin guests (incidentally
named Tony and Tiger) and the cheeky little kid of the family hides under the
dinner table and sets off firecrackers in front of guests and his poor, old
sleeping granddad – who does not flinch from the resulting explosion. But while it is sweet and funny, Cheerful
Weather is only as watchable as any similar period drama such as Downton Abbey or Agatha Christie’s Poirot.
We are met with the typical societal themes of politeness, fakery and
saving face, alongside lavish costumes and high society country past times of
cricket, afternoon tea and elegant lunches. However, the film’s backdrop is undeniably appealing, with
the story immersed within a picturesque setting of semi-grand period homes and
blossoming countryside fresh from a watercolour painting. The film has a solid cast, many of whom
have a firm footing in the period drama genre. These include the likes of Barbara Flynn and the legendary John Standing, with Elizabeth
McGovern
(Downton Abbey) as Dolly’s ‘stiff upper lip’ mother. Ellie
Kendrick
also puts in a notable quirky performance as Dolly’s naive and opinionated
younger sister, Kitty, while a nearly unrecognisable Mackenzie Crook (Pirates of
the Caribbean
) draws a few laughs as wedding guest, David.

Cheerful Weather for the Wedding is not the most intriguing
of films in terms of plot and it lacks resolution. It is however delightful to look at and fuelled with a strong
cast which will allow it to be happily received by most fans of charming period
dramas.


Misha Wallace - Social Media Editor

 
From the age of 4, Misha Wallace became transfixed by movies like Halloween and The Birds from behind the couch, unbeknownst to her family. This has developed in to an obsession with fantasy and horror films (and a considerable number of cheesy 80s and 90s flicks – but she will not be judged). If she was a character in a film she'd be the girl at the end of a horror movie, doused in blood but grinning victorious. Email: misha.wallace@filmjuice.com or find her any time of the day or night on FilmJuice social media.