Earlier this year Felicity Jones made a very rash decision for a young actress on the rise; she left a big budget film in which she was the lead to honour her commitment to a play in an off-West End theatre. In July of 2011 Felicity Jones starred in the Donmar Warehouse production of Luise Miller and abandoned the role of Snow White in Mirror, Mirror. Surely this was a huge mistake?
Before we decide, why not take a peak at the new trailer for Mirror, Mirror:
So while Jones gained acclaim for her role in Luise Miller and buzz built over her role in Like Crazy, Lily Collins has taken over the role of Snow White in a film with a much derided trailer which pales in comparison to its rival Snow White and the Huntsman. In all honesty I can’t even bring myself to watch the entire trailer for Mirror, Mirror, but I doubt the final 30 seconds showcase any better footage than the rest.
Since making the best career choice of her acting life Jones has filmed a second film with Like Crazy director Drake Doremus opposite Guy Pearce and signed on to Warren Beatty’s Howard Hughes biopic. I will never question her decisions again.
If you fancy seeing what Felicity Jones would look like in the Snow White role, hover your mouse over the image at the top of this post (please do, it took me hours to do).
British student Anna (Felicity Jones) falls in love with an American, Jacob (Anton Yelchin), overstays her visa, gets deported and so begins a whole series of angst, longing, love and despair. Shot on the fly with improvised dialogue, director Drake Doremus is going to encourage comparisons with Blue Valentine as Like Crazy has a similar natural, unstructured style. Sadly I didn’t like Blue Valentine that much…
Like Crazy certainly felt authentic, the characters seemed like real people with real, mundane problems and spoke in a genuine way. Unfortunately hanging out with a couple isn’t always a bundle of fun. When Anna and Jacob are at the height of their romance it can feel a little awkward, even irritating, as you watch them find each other adorable and share intimate moments together. The pair don’t even let us see the contents of the notes they pass together. How annoying. Later on when their relationship is put under the strain of forced separation, you get the sensation of watching friends forging on with a relationship you believe to be long dead, which leads us to the other issue I have; I didn’t want their relationship to succeed.
Felicity Jones is as wonderful as you’d expect but Anton Yelchin’s Jacob simply isn’t good enough for her. While Anna flies across the country and risks violating her student visa for Jacob, he can’t even pay her a visit without having a loud strop. In a romantic drama I need to want the romance to succeed or the whole experience can become quite frustrating. While Anna has appalling taste in men, Jacob is much more successful; I defy you to not fall for either Felicity Jones or Jennifer Lawrence by the end.
Jones and co. should be commended though for creating characters real enough for me to get so annoyed by their choices. Alex Kingston and Oliver Muirhead as Anna’s parents are not only a good source of comedy but the sole characters I fully empathised with for as they watched their daughter make a series of clumsy mistakes in her love life.
Like Crazy is a gorgeous film with great performances but left me unsatisfied. Though with this being a realistic portrayal of a love story, perhaps that was the point?
We’ve been excited about this film even before it caused a stir at Sundance. Admittedly this was because I am completely in awe of its star, Felicity Jones, but now I might get myself some company in the Felicity Jones fanwagon.
Both the trailer and poster below look gorgeous and I can feel my heart breaking already. If (500) Days of Summer, Scott Pilgrim and Submarine have taught me anything it’s that I can’t resist a film about a rocky relationship by a unique young director.
A bit of investigating gives me a potential UK release date of 3rd February 2012 and we’ll be plugging it like crazy* until then.