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Monday, March 7, 2016

Cine Beaverhausen: Maggie Smith in The Lady in the Van

Far from Downton Abbey, Maggie Smith doffs her make-up and gowns to play an eccentric homeless woman who lives in her van. The UK film displays the star's amazing versatility and should have gotten her an Oscar nod. It's said to be based on a true story.

The British do films like The Lady in the Van so well. It's a charming, simple comedy with a great team of supporting players.

Smith was nominated for a BAFTRA and Golden Globe Awards though, unfortunately, won neither.

I remember going to London and seeing Dame Maggie in the West End production of Peter Shaffer's Lettice and Lovage. She would camp it up onstage with broad, bravado hand gestures. When she got thunderous applause, she'd do it again -- and again when she felt like it. She knows how to play to a crowd and how to milk things for laughs. She brings the same type of energy to her performance in Van.

There ain't nothin' like a Dame! Not Dame Maggie Smith, anyhow. I highly endorse this extraordinary film. Treat yourself to it!

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