Starring Joan Collins and Pauline Collins
Joan Collins takes on the leading role of Helen, a former movie star, now without any of the money she once had, but with an equal amount of style and grace. Struggling to come to terms with her has-been status, she is thrilled to encounter a fan, the timid Priscilla (Pauline Collins), who appears to have had all of her self-confidence and worth beaten out of her by her long-lastingly grumpy husband Frank. During a day trip to the seaside for the old people’s home where Helen resides, Priscilla finds herself unwittingly on board, and while intending to be home in just a mere matter of hours, she decides to take a rare risk and set House, is a decadent palace in Delhi the home to these rulers for centuries. Now it is to host one final Viceroy, Lord Mountbatten (Hugh Bonneville) and his wife Edwina (Gillian Anderson), tasked with overseeing the handover back to the Indian people. But this is no simple man oeuvre; the nation is divided in opinion from the off to France with her new friend to attend a funeral – and it’s on her travels she meets artist Alberto (Franco Nero), who ignites a passion within her she’d forgotten she had, all while Helen watches on jealously. Lots of comedy ensures including swearing like troopers, stealing cars, indulging in illicit affairs with famous Italian artists (Franco Nero, who proudly bares all in a skinny dipping scene) and smoking dope The excellent dynamic between Helen and Priscilla is what makes this movie enjoyable. There’s a distinct vulnerability to Pauline Collins’ demeanor, and a blissful sense of naivety in the early stages that makes for an endearing character. Joan Collins, on the other hand, has been given a much nastier role to get her teeth into, which of course suits her down to the ground. Helen is a deeply sad, selfish woman, and while Priscilla captures that aspect of her personality, she’s also has that movie star quality about her, glamorous and elegant that the role requires. This Collins duo gives us what we expect from them but you need to be familiar with their work in the past.
Rated M 7 out of 10