Hilary and Jackie

Bomb Rating: 

I just hate cello music. It makes a sound like a group of old people in a rest home when the help emerges from the kitchen with the "strained fruit of the day."

As Homer Simpson might say: "Mmmmm, sisters." To my thinking, this isexactly the mistake made by Kiffer Finzi (David Morrissey) who is the husband of the less successful sister, Hilary du Pr� (Rachel Griffiths), and asked to sleep with the more successful sister, Jacqueline de Pr� (Emily Watson), a famous cellist.

Kiffer is all bent out of shape by Hilary's reluctant request that he sleep with her sister. For whatever reason, Hilary always says yes to Jackie, and Jackie is leading such a miserable life that she somehow thinks that a night under Kiffer's hairy, pile-driving ass is going to make life instantly grand. This would have been an excellent time for the movie to shirk the shackles of its classical score and have Kiffer and the sisters rutting under disco lights to C&C Music Factory's "Everybody Dance Now." Hey, when life gives you lemons, you just have to make lemonade. Instead, Kiffer sulks his way to an erection and boinks Jackie "reluctantly."

The irony here is that the famous sister wants what the normal sister has and not the other way around. Though the film is based on a true story, director Anand Tucker takes some unusual creative liberties. The story branches, following Hilary for a while and then moving backward in time and following Jackie from the same point forward. There are a few scenes where the sisters' lives intersect and in at least one such scene we get two almost entirely different sets of dialogue, presumably because one sister remembers it one way and the other another way.

But never mind Tucker's creative flourishes; I just hate cello music. It makes a sound like a group of old people in a rest home when the help emerges from the kitchen with the "strained fruit of the day." Sure, Jackie actually played the cello, but if Tucker was so willing to take creative license with his vision of the sisters' inner lives, why not make Jackie a little more hip? Rip that bulky wooden thing out of her hands and make her a saxophonist or -- even better -- a drummer. There are plenty of female cellists, but when was the last time you saw a female drummer struck down in her prime?

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