MCN’s Len Klady has called Mike Leigh‘s Happy-Go-Lucky (Miramax, 10.10) “a miracle.” I don’t know about that. No, I do know about that. I know how this very well-made movie made me feel. It made me feel like I was in a jail cell with Bobby Sands, but eating really good food.
HGL is a very “together” and confidently made film. It knows itself and what it’s up to. Leigh, after all, is one of the finest directors around; he has been for a couple of decades. And as I wrote last month, Sally Hawkins‘ performance as the cheerful and indefatigable Poppy is a full-on inhabiting, and she brings it all home in the last 15 to 20 minutes with quiet maturity and resigned grace.
But for some of you, the Poppy character will feel like an absolute horror. She certainly felt that way to me. I explained it all before. Here’s the 8.26 piece.