13 May 2007 | chuffnobbler
A great performance from Jessie Wallace. Convincingly ageing from teens to fifties, and convincingly descending into desperation, loneliness and booze. I'm note sure whether or not she was really singing, but that's not a major quibble.
Whenever I watch a film about a real person, I wonder which bits were real, which made up, and which are dramatic licence. Clearly, Marie's best friend and dresser is a fictional character, existing just to give her someone to talk to. The narrator was totally unnecessary, contrived and, after a while, annoying.
Intriguing period detail, and plenty of excitement in the hustle-and-bustle backstage in the music halls. The idea of Marie as a "pop diva" is an intriguing one, and there are real parallels between her and some of today's female celebs. Her politicism, leading a strike, made an interesting counterpoint to the standard relationship-trauma that films like this will always emphasise.
Having researched Marie (ie: looked her up on Wikipedia), I find that she actually married Bernard (not made clear in the film); they caused a scandal in America when trying to visit the country as an unmarried couple.
The film had the inevitable focus on tragic lovelife and abuse menfolk, but the strength of Marie Lloyd's personality, and her trailblazing role in the public eye, are never forgotten. Sometimes overlooked, but never forgotten.