Written January 09, 2013
My mum and I liked what we saw from the trailer, so we thought...'Let's just go catch it today'...!
Usually I research a movie before I go and see it, but this time I didn't....and we were in such shock! We didn't prepare ourselves for the 'nature' of this movie and it depicted FDR...! Bill Murray did a superb fob as FDR and it was nice to see him in a less comedic role. Samuel West and Olivia Colman were the BEST surprise of this movie and were highly enjoyable. Laura Linney, as always, was a gift to the screen.
Written July 30, 2014
'Hyde Park on Hudson' captures an interesting moment and shines a light on the lives of important figures in American history. I came to the movie with high expectations which were partially met. The movie is good - not great. Bill Murray is good - not great. Again, my expectations were perhaps unrealistic. Overall, the pacing of the movie is a tad slow. But the revelations about FDR's private life, his sexual liaisons, and his disability plus the tacit blindness or 'gentlemen's agreement' of those around him (not least of all the press) made for an intriguing story line that held my interest throughout.
Written September 03, 2014
Bridge players know a peek is as good as a finesse and this small glimpse into the life of FDR provides the viewer with more information about American history, even that of England, than many a history book and by far exceeds films trying to encompass a life time. The film acts like a core sample of the Earth's surface, digging deeply beneath the soil of these famous people and breaks through at their very source. Without excessive drama, the film quietly invites the viewer to catch a brief glance of what's real behind the facades of the great, famous man so pivotal in the world when humanity showed up at its worst and a few showed up to lead them to their finest hour.
As for Bill Murray, was he born to play the part? Even knowing the man personally did not prevent experiencing him as FDR on the screen. He so erased his outer personality as all good actors do and Laura Linney did as well, there was nothing left of this very funny man to mar the perfection of his creation.
Written January 24, 2013
Maybe my viewing was colored by having just visited FDR's house in Hyde Park the weekend before, but this is a really muddled film. It's not bad, just confused. It doesn't seem to know what it is. Maybe Richard Nelson should have written it as a play (seems like maybe he originally did) but it's fine in some places, laughable in others, and dull in many. Bill Murray and Laura Linney, as always, are great, but what they have to work with is so thin and surface-level, it's kind of hard to watch sometimes.
Skip the movie - visit the real Hyde Park instead. Now THAT is honestly fantastic.
Written July 25, 2014
This is an interesting, thoughtful movie that is much better than the so-called critics say. It portrays accurately and interestingly a period of American history that played a vital role in America's emergence as a world player. Set in the pre-WWII period, the movie shows FDR in his upstate NY house during a summer when the English king and queen come to solicit American support in the upcoming war. The movie is seen from the perspective of Daisy, a distant cousin of FDR who becomes his mistress over the course of the movie. While it's hard to picture Ghostbuster Bill Murray as FDR, his performance is interesting and he does a spot-on characterization of the polio-effected physical limitations of FDR. I strongly recommend this movie to anyone under 40 as it will teach them a lot about the America of their grandparents' generation.