Song for Marion is a heartwarming comedic drama following shy, grumpy pensioner Arthur as he is reluctantly inspired by his beloved wife Marion to join a highly unconventional local choir. At odds with his son James, it is left to charismatic choir director Elizabeth to try and persuade Arthur that he can learn to embrace life. London-set, the story follows Arthur as he embarks on a hilarious, life-affirming journey of musical self-discovery. The superb British cast in Song For Marion is made up of Academy Award Winner VANESSA REDGRAVE (Julia, Atonement, Howard s End), cinema legend TERENCE STAMP (Billy Budd, The Limey, The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert), GEMMA ARTERTON (Quantum of Solace, Prince of Persia, Tamara Drewe) and CHRISTOPHER ECCLESTON (Shallow Grave, Elizabeth, Doctor Who).
A warm antidote to the brash noise and effects over humans approach of a modern day blockbuster movie, Song For Marion
is a terrific drama. It has dark moments, moments of real humour, and a broad streak of humanity running right the way through it.
In the central role is Terence Stamp, who plays Arthur, a pensioner with no short of grumpiness to him. But then Song For Marion scratches the surface of that, and questions why. And underneath, there's the story of a man who finds himself struggling to get close to anybody. His wife, played wonderfully by Vanessa Redgrave, is ill, and his son, played by Christopher Eccleston, is distant. So Arthur is ultimately cajoled into joining a local choir, which has unexpected repercussions for him.
Headlined by Stamp, who's magnetic in a nuanced, wonderfully pitched performance, Song For Marion
aims at an audience not too far removed from that of The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel
, although tonally it's a slightly different film. But it's just as worthwhile a one, though, thanks to the strong ensemble, diligent work from writer/director Paul Andrew Williams, and a willingness never to talk down to its audience. --Jon Foster