Georgy Girl (1966)
Reviewed on 2013 June 22
This is another ’60s title I’d heard much of, but never got the chance to watch. I was pretty psyched to finally get to see this: a classic, set in Swingin’ London! With Lynn Redgrave and James Mason! I settled in, my excitement only to give way to disappointment within the first few minutes.
Georgy (Redgrave) is introduced to us in the very beginning of the movie, title song tweeting away as she bops down a groovy London street. She peers into a window of a fashionable salon, wincing at her messy hair in the reflection, and for a few minutes here she brilliantly conveys to the viewer how insecure she is about her appearance. Things start to falter when she sweeps out of the salon sporting a fancy updo. A normal person would have had fun with it and gotten a pair of earrings or at least worked on a better walk to go with the new ’do. If she really hated it she would wait until she got home to jump in the shower. Instead Georgy runs into a woman’s bathroom to torpedo the thing in the sink.
Georgy sabotages herself, and a lot of that stems from her father, a servant to a rich man (Mason). Dear old dad takes work more seriously than his own flesh and blood. In fact, her father senses that his married employer has a crush on Georgy, and seems to be perfectly willing to look the other way as long as it’s lucrative. There’s more empathy for her when you see the cards she was dealt, but it’s frustrating to see her play them so poorly. Nor does it make it easier to watch when she fawns over her nasty roommate Meredith (Charlotte Rampling) and her goofball, strung-along beau Jos (Alan Bates). It’s one thing to be damaged; I realize poor Georgy is a doormat. This grew irritating when she was a doormat that wouldn’t learn.
The acting was good; I think everyone did what they needed to do with the script. My gripe was the annoying quotient of the characters in this movie. With the exception of Mason, and he was questionable too, none of them were likable and in their own way they were all selfish. To an extent this includes Georgy.
Two chocolate morsels, and I’m giving those pretty grudgingly. It’s a slice of the ’60s, I’ll give it that much, but it left a bad taste in my mouth.