De-Lovely (2004)

PG-13   |    |  Biography, Drama, Music


De-Lovely (2004) Poster

Inspecting a magical biographical stage musical, composer Cole Porter reviews his life and career with his wife, Linda.

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6.6/10
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Photos

  • Diana Krall in De-Lovely (2004)
  • Diane Kruger at an event for De-Lovely (2004)
  • Kevin Kline and Alanis Morissette in De-Lovely (2004)
  • Alanis Morissette at an event for De-Lovely (2004)
  • Ashley Judd at an event for De-Lovely (2004)
  • Lara Fabian and Mario Frangoulis in De-Lovely (2004)

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2 August 2004 | glenw9398
Who told them they could do that?
This film looks well and has several performances, both dramatic and musical, that are worthy of note. Of the latter in fact Elvis Costello and Natalie Cole in particular came off very well. My biggest beef, however, was with Sheryl Crow's performance of "Begin the Beguine." I haven't heard or read it commented upon so apparently it wasn't noticed that she didn't sing the melody nor did the arrangement follow the fairly complex chord structure that Cole Porter wrote. Taking liberties in jazz is one thing. It's common practice among jazz musicians to take interpretative flights far from the source material and yet still stay fairly close to the general structure and melodic line. In this travesty of a straight, non-jazz performance Ms. Crow quite simply didn't sing the tune as written and the arrangement fairly clobbered the carefully structured co-relation of major and minor chords, altered notes leading to secondary dominants and shifts of key and melody that lead to the tune's climax and denouement. I suppose it's some sort of comment on the general unfamiliarity with popular song of the golden age of Broadway in general and Cole Porter in particular that is to blame but it seems a pity that someone somewhere along the line didn't call her on this. It's plainly and flatly wrong and she should have been told.

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