Retro Review: Saving Grace

Written: August 2000

Following along on the footsteps of “The Full Monty”, “The Big Tease” and “Waking Ned Devine”, “Saving Grace” brings us back into the world of yet another quaint little British town.

This time we are focused on the recently widowed Grace (played by Academy Award nominee, Brenda Blethyn), who has just found out her husband was the world’s worst bookkeeper and she may lose everything.

Grace’s gardener Matthew (played by Drew Carey’s Craig Ferguson) is desperate to help Grace so he mildly suggests she use her gardening skills on his secret stash of marijuana plants.

Convinced that she can use the plants to save her estate Grace agrees. This leads to their misadventures and very delicate humor which will charm audiences much like a lot of the good British comedies before it.

As I watched Blethyn in this film I reflected back on another great actress who Blethyn seems to emulate through a lot of the film.

The actress I am talking about is the always bright and brilliant Maggie Smith. This emulation of Smith brings a delicate and peaceful innocence to Grace which really makes the film gel.

If this wasn’t there the idea of drugs and harvesting them could have turned this little comedy into a deep dark comedy. I also have to admire the acting of Craig Ferguson who seems to be really getting a knack for the silver screen.

He is always a hoot every week on Drew Carey but his silver screen adventures have allowed audiences to see there could be an emerging British comedy star in this man.

The fault that I swirled around was the actual drug angle which seemed to change gears as the film entered its fourth quarter.

The town’s folks seemed to never think that a sweet lady like Grace would do such a thing but in the fourth quarter it is revealed they just really turned a blind eye in her need.

This whole element really ruined the ending of the film. Another question I wonder is why in every comedy, do the characters in that film always have to end up with somebody?

Just a query.

(3.5 out of 5)

So Says the Soothsayer.

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