Screening: Wednesday, January 22
Genre: American biography/drama
Adapted by Tom Edge from Peter Quilter’s play, End of the Rainbow, and directed by Rupert Goold, this compelling film focuses on the final months of the life of America’s famed diva, Judy Garland (Renee Zellweger). On her own, with dismal prospects during the winter of 1968 and spring of 1969, Judy Garland accepts a five-week sold-out engagement at the Talk of the Town nightclub in London. Judy is in many ways at the “end of her rainbow”, after a golden career on stage and in film. It has been 30 years since she rose to fame with her superb performance in The Wizard of Oz. Flashbacks feature a young Judy, an extraordinary actress/singer on screen, but behind the scenes at MGM, an anxious child, traumatized by the highly controlling producer, Louis B Mayer (Richard Cordery). The talented and troubled Judy develops an addictive relationship with the spotlight, every bit as powerful as her inevitable later attachment to alcohol and pills. Although this film ushers us into the dark reality behind Judy’s rainbow, it never loses her rainbow’s magical glow, as it celebrates her golden voice and brilliantly colourful performances.