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Mrs Harris Goes To Paris Is Simply Delightful



Mrs Harris  Goes To  Paris(Prime Video)

Rating: *** 1/2(three  and a  half)

The underrated monstrously gifted Lesley Manville is the life soul and breath  of this enchanting nugget about a  lonely British househelp  woman(with two incredibly supportive  friends) in London in 1957 who comes into some unexpected money. Instead of  putting the fortune  away for a rainy day Ada travels  to Paris to  buy herself an expensive Christian  Dior dress.

 It is  a hideously inappropriate self indulgence  for a woman in  a recession-hit society where Ada  loses her job quickly.Refreshingly Ada doesn’t sit and mourn. Not for long. Armed with the widow’s pension she  sets off to  chase a dream in the city  of  dreams  Paris. It is  terrific notion. To liberate  a widow from her mourning straight to her evening of self-fulfilment  in an era when  action  spoke  louder than words and  every action was targeted  by  moralists and prudes as a  sign of  sinful pleasure pursuit.

 The  images  in the Christian Dior  property in Paris  are  straight off a  fairytale. If you are a couture fan, this  film will thrill your aesthetics  as  much as  they thrill Ada.All those  divine dresses floating around Ada…she feels she is in  a dream.

So do we. Director  Anthony Fabian(loved  his two early directorials Skin and  Louder Than Words, especially the  former) places Ada in a bubble of self-gratification. We are  allowed neither to judge nor disapprove of her blithe choices in  life.

That  flaming-red Christian Dior dress is  what she will have. Like watching a derby horse  hoof it to the  finishing line, we  follow Ada’s dream right to its logical conclusion.There is  something distinctly fairytale-like  in the way Ada  gets her dream dress. Although set during  a time when society  was in a flux there seems to be  little here  to disturb Ada’s dreamscape beyond  the initial shock of  being declared a war widow. But that too comes with a price, in a good a way, as  Ada gets a  widow’s pension that makes her fly off into her dream.

Seen as a  fairytale,  Mrs Harris Goes  To  Paris is as  charming as Cinderella on  a flight instead  of  a stagecoach. In  Paris she meets  only gracious helpful people who help her realize her dream. There is  the  legendary French actress Isabelle Huppert  playing the spoilsport. But even she purrs like  a cat before too long.

This is a  charming dream-come-true film shot with restrain grace and feeling.

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