Plunkett & MacLeane full movie review - Wonderful movie
This movie reminded me of Quills. Perhaps it is the whole period/costume drama, because their plots are entirely different.
Plunkett and Macleane is about two men named Plunkett and Macleane. Plunkett is the all wise rugged thief who is played by Robert Carlyle and Macleane is a gentleman, a captain to be exact, who has gambled his good name away. He is played by Johnny Lee Miller.
******SPOILERS********** The story has the two heroes meeting while a burglary goes wrong for Plunkett and his former partner. They are robbing a coach and crash into the prison Macleane is being held in. Plunkett and his partner are being chased by the evil and ugly Chance, who has a superiority complex and a thing for gouging out eyeballs.
His partner is injured seriously and swallows a ruby that comes in handy for both parties. Chance kills the poor robber and is on a quest to capture Plunkett. Macleane is of course a silent witness to all of this, and along with a sudden entrance to freedom he now knows a ruby is lodged in the insides of a man and will go to the cemetery to find it.
Plunkett has the same idea and the two men meet again.They are caught and are imprisoned for robbing from the grave, the stolen ruby turns out to be their saving grace. The two men strike a deal and a friendship as bandits. With Macleanes access to high society and Plunketts mischievous demeanor they form a perfect team of flamboyant gentlemen highwaymen. They encounter rich and rob as one nobleman puts it "with style". The two seem to be on a great path heading for the Americas with their acquired riches, until Macleane falls in love with the lovely Lady Rebecca Gibson(Liv Tyler).
This movie works because of the humor and acting. British movies in particular seem to have a seriousness to them that can be depressing. This movie is both funny and depressing, this is not a pretty time to be in England ( though Liv Tyler's Rebecca Gibson surely thinks so). It has wonderful quirky characters such as Rochester( Alan Cumming).
I loved all the characters and some particularly favorite scenes which I enjoyed.
1. Rochester is just great as the 18th century flamboyant bisexual. He of course "swings every way" though his preference is clearly male and all scenes involving Lord Rochester are great, since he parades around like a queen he so wishes he could be.
2. The sex scene between Macleane and the richest woman in England Estell is just funny. Here Macleane is trying to be all romantic and charming to a woman old enough to be his mother. Estell annoyed at his pretty words simply says "oh shut up and f*** me!" Hilarious!
3. The robbery at Estells engagement party where the stylish Macleane (masked of course) not only robs the guests, but treats them to some entertainment. He disgustingly reveals to her guests that this woman is infected with the pox! (something Macleane caught by his poetic hook up). Being a Lady, Estell is embarrassed and destroyed as fireworks ablaze and Macleane succeeds in shaming her.
4. The ball scene. Great music. It is worth just looking at. Liv Tyler looks absolutely beautiful with a Marie Antoinette style hair and haughty attitude. Great.
5. Macleanes ongoing anguish over his love for Rebecca is quite endearing. Plunkett is positively annoyed, but Macleane is truly distraught. Even while pleasuring prostitutes he is in a complex about the lady Rebecca and when he is infected with the pox (thanks to Estell) he is disgusted and tells Plunkett "How am I to make love to Rebecca?".
6. The hanging scene. Again another scene where the music plays a role. Macleane is caught and is to be put to death by hanging. It is a sad scene watching both Rochester and Rebeccas broken faces while Chance is grinning like an idiot and forcing Rebecca to watch her beloved die....but than in grand fashion Plunkett arrives to save the day!!!!!!!!!!
7. The friendship between the two men is really my favorite as friendship seems to lack so much with movies and if two characters of the same sex are good friends they are immediately labeled homosexuals. I do not think this is a borderline homosexual friendship. It is one that came out of convenience, but turned genuine. As is stated above one is a rugged thief the other a gentlemen. When Macleane is caught and is being tried he shouts in his final words to a room full of nobility that the only thing he is sorry for is the hurt he caused his friend Plunkett. He continues to state that while Plunkett is not of noble blood he is more of a gentlemen than any man in the room. A nice touch in my opinion.
This movie is one of the better period films in that it has some pretty funny scenes and it has a modern twist. A movie that if disgustingly great.