Tuesday, April 10, 2012



Now, here is one of the saddest movie I have ever seen, Albert Nobbs... A tale of a woman posing as a man in 19th-century Ireland, and it is an amazing, incredible story of humanity: how cruel we can be, how we will do anything including totally losing our sense of self in order to survive. 

Albert Nobbs is not in every way a man. She works as a butler and waiter in a 19th century Dublin hotel, where she dresses and passes as a man because a woman would not be hired for the job, and she needs the economic security and primarily because, years earlier, he, as a she, was raped. But the pain she lives in isn't worth the money. Many people pass as members of the other sex for many reasons, but and my impression is that for most of them, and in ways for Albert Nobbs, it answers a genuine emotional need.

Albert Nobbs isn't always happy being a man. But he is especially happy when fantasizing about the tobacconist’s shop he plans to open and about the emotional life he intends to have there. There is something stiff and genderless and traumatized about him. His entire life is focused on economic security and on an emotionally warm and safe life spent both industriously and basking in the radiant glow of the hearth, and she lives in terror of being exposed. Regard her his body language: shy, repressed, reclusive, trying to fade in and become invisible, and how awkwardly he stumbles (and looks), dressed as a woman running along the beach.

The hotel is a Dublin crossroads for people of some means but of no great distinction. It's run by the ebullient Mrs. Baker, who sails a jolly ship but as an employer is no paragon. Employees come and go, and although Albert is considered by everyone an odd fellow, she's still there. Homosexuality is not unknown in this establishment; Viscount Yarrell checks in with a free-drinking crew and specifies an adjoining room for his friend. But Albert Nobbs isn't a homosexual of any description except to those of you who see her only as a woman, and, as a woman, one who lusts after at least one other woman, life would be simpler if she were.

This is such a brave performance by Glenn Close, who in making Albert so real, makes the character as pathetic and unlikable as she must have been in life. The film is based on a story by George Moore (1852-1933), an Irish realist writer who may have known some real-life parallels in Dublin. Close never breaks reality. My heart went out to Albert Nobbs, the depth of whose fears are unimaginable. But it is Janet McTeer who brings the film such happiness and, with Close, the life as that it this film has., because tThe tragedy of Albert Nobbs is that there can be notoo little happiness in her his life. The conditions she has had thrust upon him chosen make it impossible. have made his life complex and too-often lonely.

I hope you enjoy the movie as much as I am! Oh ya, remember to pause the song tracks below before you watch the slides! 

Good day.

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