Notting Hill – 1999 – English
Film directed in 1999 by Roger Michell, and starring Hugh Grant, Julia Roberts, Rhys Ifans, Hugh Bonneville, Emma Chambers, James Dreyfus, Tim McInnerny, Gina McKee, Dylan Moran, Matthew Modine, Emily Mortimer, Alec Baldwin, Richard McCabe, Roger Frost, Henry Goodman, Julian Rhind-Tutt, Lorelei King, John Shrapnel, Clarke Peters, Arturo Venegas, Yolanda Vazquez, Mischa Barton, Dorian Lough, Sanjeev Bhaskar, Paul Chahidi, Melissa Wilson, Tony Armatrading, Phillip Manikum, Samuel West, Dennis Matsuki, Patrick Barlow, Andy de la Tour, Maureen Hibbert, Rupert Procter, Ann Beach…
Synopsis: Every man’s dream comes true for William Thacker, an unsuccessful Notting Hill bookstore owner, when Anna Scott, the world’s most beautiful woman and best-liked actress, enters his shop. A little later, he still can’t believe it himself, William runs into her again – this time spilling orange juice over her. Anna accepts his offer to change in his nearby apartment, and thanks him with a kiss, which seems to surprise her even more than him. Eventually, Anna and William get to know each other better over the months, but being together with the world’s most wanted woman is not easy – neither around your closest friends, nor in front of the all-devouring press.
Review: Notting Hill proves one thing — jokes lie in the oddest places. This film is an excellent vehicle for Julia Roberts to put her own life as an actress under the microscope. While Roberts’ “Anna Scott” character isn’t an autobiographical figure, the Scott character allows for some biting satire at the life of Roberts herself. Need I mention some excellent one liners in the film like the sister of Hugh Grant… “I feel like we are sisters”, an excellent throw-back to “My Best Friend’s Wedding”… or my favourite, a discussion about nude body doubles just before a nude Julia Roberts (or a Julia Roberts body double) crosses the screen.
Apart from the small bit of satire, Grant’s character plays on the emotions of every guy who has ever unexplainably fell in to, threw orange juice-on, lost out on, and fell back in to love. Roberts character can only help us understand how such a relationship as the one her and Grant share in the movie, could be “Surreal, but nice.”
A sweet film surely not to be missed!