Happy-Go-Lucky

2008

Comedy / Drama / Romance

1
Rotten Tomatoes Critics - Certified Fresh 93%
Rotten Tomatoes Audience - Upright 67%
IMDb Rating 7 10 37973

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Synopsis


Uploaded By: FREEMAN
March 27, 2021 at 11:01 PM

Director

Cast

Sally Hawkins as Poppy
Eddie Marsan as Scott
Elliot Cowan as Bookshop Assistant
720p.BLU
1.07 GB
1280*544
English 2.0
R
23.976 fps
1 hr 59 min
P/S counting...

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by lexo1770 9 / 10

A cheerful film with an underlying vein of tragedy

Happy-Go-Lucky has been reviewed in the British press as a relatively lightweight Mike Leigh movie, but I'm not so sure. The story revolves around Sally Hawkins' remarkable performance as primary school teacher Poppy Cross, a highly unusual character in that Hawkins and Leigh between them manage to make her consistently cheerful and optimistic without being either naive or irritating. Poppy is presented as both relentlessly cheery and, on another level, remarkably intuitive; throughout the film, she has a series of encounters with troubled male figures (a boy in her class who has started bullying, a very strange homeless Irishman and, above all, her phenomenally uptight driving instructor Scott) and in all of them, Poppy's liveliness and friendly curiosity about other people is seen to be a powerful counter to male self-pity, anger and despair.

Hawkins' character is not someone who is inclined to let life get her down, so it's just as well that she is surrounded by people with a somewhat more sardonic or downbeat take on reality. Her flatmate Zoe (Alexis Zegerman, very good) is a wonderfully dry and sarky counter to Poppy's enthusiasm, although the affection between them is palpable. Poppy's younger sisters Suzy and Helen are also quite different; Suzy is a law student who is more interested in clubbing, drinking and playing with her brother-in-law's Playstation than in criminal justice, while Helen is heavily pregnant, obsessed with acquiring the trappings of a respectable suburban life and unable to understand how her older sister can be so happy living in a rented flat and not stepping onto the property ladder.

The big surprise for me is that I had been led to believe that this is a more or less straightforward feelgood film. It isn't. Scott, Poppy's driving teacher (Eddie Marsan), is the most affecting character in it, and one of the greatest and most unforgettable characters in Leigh's oeuvre. Most of the reviews I've read of the film depict Scott as a hateful, sinister or otherwise despicable character, but although it's true that he is an uptight, judgmental, angry bigot, it is also perfectly clear from his first appearance that he doesn't know what he's talking about and that he is driven by emotional problems that he hasn't even begun to get a handle on. Marsan's extraordinary performance is one of the best things I've seen on film for a long time. Scott has been afflicted with very bad teeth and a mild speech defect (he can't really say the letter 'r') and although his inner anger and bigotry is played for laughs for a lot of the film, in the end it is allowed to blossom forth in a riveting scene where his fury, jealousy and terror of his own darkness spill forth in a heartbreaking and riveting torrent. If part of the point of art is to help us to understand people we would otherwise have little sympathy with, then this film is a work of art. I've never seen Marsan before but he deserves awards for this movie, no question.

Happy-Go-Lucky is a highly enjoyable and often very funny film, but it also carries terrible sadness. I have never been a massive fan of Mike Leigh, but lately I have to admit that I was wrong. He just seems to get better and better.

Reviewed by DaSchaust 8 / 10

Wisdom, not naivety

Having read some critiques to the extent that this was a film about a naive, childish woman who refused to take life seriously, I was hesitant whether I'd be able to bear this movie.

Luckily, it turned out to be one of the most entertaining cinema experiences since quite a long time.

Poppy isn't the person refusing to become an adult which her misanthropic driving instructor Scott accuses her to be. Our time indeed seems to bring about such people but they could hardly be more different than this lovely young woman. The first scene, with the girls drunk and chatting nonsense, is perhaps a bit misleading on this issue. (In fact, several people left the cinema during this scene, seemingly annoyed of all the giggling.) Rather, Poppy is wise and strong, trying to see the positive in everyone and everything. Humour, and sometimes benign derision, are her ways of keeping sulkiness out of her life. But, as everyone with a heart should feel, that is a gift, not a deficit. What damage can it cause to have a nice word or a smile for your fellow humans? On the other hand, she doesn't shut her eyes on the sad sides of life, such as a traumatized homeless man or a boy beaten by his mother's new partner, and one understands that she is deeply sad about not being able to help Scott, even if she would have had every reason to simply hate him for his bad temper, his racism and his stalking.

The director has done a superb job with this production; it is packed with intelligent, witty dialogs and convincingly drawn characters.

Our world needs a lot more people like Poppy, or at least -- if they don't possess her strength and optimism -- people who are sympathetic with her values instead of feeling threatened by humaneness. Yes, life is difficult and often sad, so let's tackle it with a smile!

Reviewed by seawalker 7 / 10

Maybe the world is too much for even the most dedicated optimist?

Some UK critics have been saying that "Happy-Go-Lucky" is the happiest and most cheerful movie that Mike Leigh has ever made. Well, I don't know if I would exactly agree with that. It is and it isn't.

Sally Hawkins' primary school teacher Poppy is, indeed, a very happy individual. Annoyingly happy, insanely cheerful, depressingly optimistic and psychotically 'Up!', most of the time. It is a tribute to Sally Hawkins performance that, once you get past the initial irritation with her, you completely fall in love with Poppy, her goodness, her openness and, yes, her simple niceness.

Then there is Eddie Marsan's driving instructor Scott. Scott is the very antithesis of happy. Scott is rigid, angry, frustrated, impatient, knotted up and racist. A borderline OCD sufferer, who is tortured by who-knows-what in his past. Scott is the most bitter and overwhelming character in a Mike Leigh film since David Thewlis' Johnny in "Naked". It is a towering performance by Eddie Marsan.

If Poppy is the light, Scott is definitely the dark, but it seemed to me that dark shadows inhabit the whole of "Happy-Go-Lucky". The unhappy schoolboy, the glum Sister, the other sister - a social climber who dominates her husband. Little vignettes of irritation and annoyance. Typical Mike Leigh.

"Happy-Go-Lucky" is a really good film, if you stick with it. I liked the way that Poppy does stop smiling towards the end. Maybe the world is too much for even the most dedicated optimist?

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