Release Date: July 2, 2004
Limited release

Movie of the Day for Wednesday, May 19, 2004
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Weird question: are you sure you meant to sign for this movie, Ashley?

On the Big Board
Position Staff In Brief
57/92 David Mumpower De-deadly de-dull.
75/126 Kim Hollis A marvelous conceit that dragged a little too much. Kline is terrific as Cole Porter.

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So please be sweet, my chickadee,
And when I kiss you, just say to me,
"It's delightful, it's delicious,
It's delectable, it's delirious,
It's dilemma, it's delimit, it's deluxe,
It's de-lovely".

That song is just one of many Cole Porter-penned tunes that is utterly recognizable for its wit, sensuality, and innuendo. Having previously been played by the debonair Cary Grant in an extremely fictionalized version of his life (Night and Day), Kevin Kline now takes on the role of the talented composer in a tale that looks to be at least somewhat closer to the truth.

Though Porter is said to have loved the Grant film, it takes great liberties with his biographical details, most particularly glossing over the fact that the composer placed great importance on his sexuality -- he was fairly forthcoming about the fact that he was gay in a time when that was a taboo that could be somewhat difficult to overcome.

Despite his orientation, while overseas in Europe he met a wealthy and beautiful divorcee named Linda Lee Thomas. Coming off a marriage to an abusive husband, a relationship/partnership with Porter was very palatable (even though she understood his preferences). The two had a very happy marriage until her death in 1954.

It is this aspect of Porter's life on which De-Lovely will focus. Although he is famous both as a composer of Broadway and Hollywood musicals, many people know him just as much for his Yale years, where he wrote many of the school's fight songs. While Night and Day jumped in around that point on the Porter timeline, De-Lovely will instead be a fictionalized look at the man's marriage.

Kline's Porter will be a reflective one; a man looking back on his life as if it was one big stage show with singing and dancing, with wife Linda Lee (Ashley Judd) as his co-star. And Porter is the big star who develops an unlikely marriage and love affair with a woman despite the fact that he is gay.

De-Lovely will contain plenty of performances of some of the best-known Porter songs by several well-known musicians. A sampling of these include Elvis Costello doing "Let's Misbehave," and "Let's Fall in Love" by Alanis Morissette. The film looks to be an enjoyable and quirky affair, and really should be a delight for those who enjoy the composer's music, whether the biographical details are a bit of a stretch or not. (Kim Hollis/BOP)

Vital statistics for De-Lovely
Main Cast Kevin Kline, Ashley Judd, Jonathan Pryce
Supporting Cast Keith Allen, Angie Hill, Natalie Cole, Allan Corduner, Elvis Costello, Sheryl Crow, Mick Hucknall, Diana Krall, Alanis Morissette, Caroline O'Connor, Peter Polycarpou, Robbie Williams, John Barrowman, Nicola Dawn, Lara Fabian, Vivian Green, Lemar Obika
Director Irwin Winkler
Screenwriter Jay Cocks
Distributor MGM
Trailer Click Here for Trailer
Official Site
Rating PG-13
Running Time 125 minutes
Screen Count 16
Awards Awards page for De-Lovely
Talent in red has entry in The Big Picture



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