A Date for Mad Mary full movie review - A Date for Mad Mary has bags of Irish charm and is a terrific life affirming movie experience.
A Date for Mad Mary feels like the kind of film that if it had a French director and suitable name with a rhetorical flourish it would probably get a standing ovation and walk away with a Palme Dior. Nevertheless, it is a lovely film and very fine piece of film making.
Directing his first feature Darren Thornton does a great job adapting the film from a theatre monologue, 10 Dates with Mad Mary by Yasmine Akram. Akram for the record is best known for her role as Janine in season three of Sherlock.
The premise for the movie is the classic leading protagonist returning to their old world and life after a spell in prison. But a sharp script, elegantly shot, a neat soundtrack and with great all round performances from a largely unheralded but superb cast elevates the drama to top notch cinema.
There is plenty of pathos, laughs and romance as Mary McArdle returns to a life living with her mum and nan, with her best friend getting ready to get hitched and trying to resume the good and bad old times. In the process Mary finds herself searching for a suitable candidate of the male species as her plus one at her friend Charlene's wedding only to find a new and unexpected relationship along the way.
Much of the film's charm is its down to earth, funny and endearing nature. The straightforward but genuine Irish characters interact in a thoroughly engaging, subtly thought provoking and totally realistic manner. Snapshots of life which feel very believable.
And so we see Mary trying to reconcile her previous life and her past where she had the unfortunate mad prefix to her name. But Mary finds that the world she knew has moved on and also has to adapt to situations and new emotions when she stumbles upon part-time wedding photographer and musician Jess.
Mary is brilliantly played by Seána Kerslake as the slightly lost teenager while Charleigh Bailey as best friend Charlene and Tara Lee as the savvy and sweet Jess are also excellent.
A Date for Mad Mary has bags of Irish charm and is a terrific life affirming movie experience.