This is all rather predictable, but it’s a lovely feelgood film. And there’s a lot of ’80s music in it, which is always a plus point. It’s inspired by the story of real Military Wives choir, who performed at the Festival of Remembrance in 2011 and then got the Christmas number one spot, but it’s been turned into a comedy-drama-with-sad-bits-too, like Calendar Girls.
We’ve got posh colonel’s wife Kate, who comes across like a prefect in a boarding school book, wanting all the women to join in group social activities whilst their partners are serving Afghanistan, and a lot of not posh women who are rather bemused by the idea. But they do all get quite caught up in it, and it does help them to bond. It also distracts them from their worries – and we warm to Kate as we understand that her son’s recently been killed in action, and that she’s looking for a way to try to cope. Then, inevitably, the husband of one of the women is killed, and the others come together to try to comfort her.
They aren’t keen on traditional choir music, and go for ’80s pop instead, which is great stuff! Then they’re asked to perform at the Festival of Remembrance. There’s a disastrous performance at a local market, which knocks everyone’s confidence. Then they aren’t sure that it’d be appropriate to go ahead after the aforementioned death. Then there’s a big falling out. But, of course, it all comes right in the end. Hurrah!
I don’t know how realistic a depiction it is of life at a military barracks, but it … well, the lifestyle wouldn’t appeal to most people. OK, it has to come across as a closed community or else the idea wouldn’t work, but no-one’s got a job, or any friends in the surrounding area. The teenage daughter of one of the women moans about being bored. I’m not surprised. It’s a bit 1950s, with all these women hanging around waiting for their husbands, and not doing much else. And no husbands waiting for wives, or indeed husbands waiting for husbands or wives waiting for wives. As I understand it, the real choir is also open to servicewomen – although I suppose that wouldn’t have worked for the film, because the idea was that the regiment was away in Afghanistan.
But, hey, it’s a nice film about female friendship and women supporting each other, and I liked it. And it’s a reminder of just how difficult it must be to be the partner of someone in the Armed Forces, or any other dangerous job.
I’d have gone to see this at the pictures, but it was only just coming out when we went into lockdown, so I didn’t get the chance. I’d have paid for either car parking or a return ticket on the Metrolink. I’d have paid for admission at Vue. I’d also have bought a drink, and maybe something to eat. Then I’d have gone for a wander round town afterwards, and bought another drink, and maybe something to eat, and maybe done a bit of shopping. As it was, with cinemas closed, I watched it on Amazon Prime, for which I pay anyway, and made my own drinks. So I’ve saved money, and calories, but it’s not exactly done the local economy much good. Such is 2020.
We need more feelgood films!