Downton Abbey: Review by @Kush_Hayes
I know nothing about Downton Abbey. So little that when I made my normal social media post announcing that I would be viewing the movie adapted and continued from its UK TV Series and identifying the titular property as a hotel, I would receive several replies including one from Little Sister Hayes stating that “Its not a hotel!”. And perhaps it still isnt, however as the trailer indicates, The King and Queen of England will be stopping for the night on one of their tours. And oh boy is the land aflutter at the news.
Its become such a big deal that the head butler, despite being instructed to ‘clean everything’ has been stopped at the room with the silverware because he doesnt know which set The Kings staff will insist on using. I agree with the folks he reports too, this shouldnt be an issue and they go back the man he succeeded bringing him out of retirement. Again, not knowing who this man is from the show, its definitely a big deal when he walks onto the property and the filmmakers detail that clearly.
Time moves pretty quick in this story. Although we are only talking about a time span of maybe five days maximum whereas a quick wikipedia search shows each season (or series) will take up to maybe three years in its timeline. This still feels like its trying to squeeze a full season into a two hour package. Conflicts are identified and then delt with as quickly as they are identified. I suppose its efficient storytelling, but I felt this movie lacked any drama, especially with some of the avenues they went down. Espionage, questioning identity (this is big for a few characters), several re-positionings of power, a love triangle, classism, trust issues, loss prevention these are just some of the themes in play, but never focused on. Something will be implied. Then it will be executed. Then it will be resolved. As stated above I guess its efficient, especially with 21 characters but several times I uttered “Oh, is that it?”
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