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Hope Springs (2003)

British artist Colin Ware receives a wedding invitation to his fiance Veras wedding to another man.

Directed by:

Mark Herman

Rating: 6/10

Running Time: 92 minutes

UK Certificate: 12a

Country: United Kingdom

British artist Colin Ware receives a wedding invitation to his fiancé Vera’s wedding to another man. Distraught and unable to cope he goes to America without telling anybody; ending up in a small New England town called ‘Hope’. He meets Mandy who comforts him, and they fall in love. Then Vera turns up from England with a shock for Colin.

Colin Firth plays Colin Ware, a handsome, funny and well-spoken English portrait artist. When he arrives in Hope, he checks in at a local motel owned by the Fishers. Joanie Fisher introduces Colin to Mandy, played by Heather Graham, in an attempt to cure his depression. Colin and Mandy fall in love, and he almost forgets about what he left behind at home as they set about organising a portrait exhibition of local residents called ‘Images Of Hope’. In ‘Hope’, Colin found happiness at a point where he felt his life was over!

Comedy ensues, however, when Vera comes after Colin, and arrives at the motel. Joanie, and her husband attempt to keep Vera from seeing Colin and Mandy together, with extremely comic tactics involving the searching for an non-existent guestbook which they demand Vera signs before seeing Colin! This is one of the most humorous scenes in the film; along with the scene where Colin buys artist supplies at the local store!

Joanie’s husband ‘Fisher’ (played by Frank Collison) is one of the funniest characters. Famous in ‘Hope’ for having the strangest and ugliest face, he provides plenty of comedy and warmth to entertain the audience, and proves to be a very loveable character despite his physical appearance.

When Vera finds Colin, she does her best throughout the remainder of the film to split him and Mandy up, and persuade him to return to England with her. Minnie Driver gives an excellent performance as Vera; perhaps her best performance so far. Her portrayal of an upper-class, stylish, fashion magazine editor is perfect, and one grows to be really glad Colin has found Mandy; especially when Vera reveals the secret behind the wedding invitation. The audience’s frustration with Vera reaches its peak when she is crowned ‘Queen Of Hope’ at the local festival!

Hope Springs is a charming film which mixes English and American humour neatly together in a town where everybody knows everyone else’s business. The ending is very satisfactory, but extremely predictable, and leaves no character that unhappy at the film’s close.

It's Got: A fine & entertaining example of English humour from Colin Firth!

It Needs: Less of Hopes Mayor

Summary

Pure escapism and joy for it's audience, and makes the world seem a better place!

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