January 7, 2013

Dame Maggie Smith Day

Yesterday was just filled to the brim with Maggie Smith goodness.  In the morning I went to my Cinema Club and they were screening a film called Quartet starring Dame Maggie as Jean Horton, an aging opera singer who used to get "no less that 12 curtain calls" she's happy to remind you.  She has just come to live at the Beecham House, a fancy retirement home for former musicians.  Believe it or not, it's a "let's get the band back together" plot, with three of her former colleagues trying to get her back to sing the quartet from Rigoletto to help raise money for the home. The big problem is that she used to be married to one of them and broke his heart lo these many years ago and some patching up is in order.  Billy Connolly is in it as the rascally dirty old man and is hilarious.  It seemed like it was going to be another Exotic Marigold Hotel but it's much better than that.  Oh, and Michael Gambon is in it playing a bossy flamer of a stage director, because you know there's a rule that at least two Harry Potter actors have to be in any movie with a predominately British cast, don't you?  Well it's true.  It should be in some theaters starting this coming Friday if you're interested.  Be sure to stay through the quite touching credit sequence at the end.

Then, of course, we stayed up late to watch the American premiere of the third season of Downton Abbey.  As Patton Oswalt tweeted: 'Maggie Smith rasping the words, "Certainly not!" is my Spirit Animal.'