Blythe Danner inhabits the role of Carol in the new movie "I'll See You in My Dreams" so easily, watching her you feel you know her as well as the friends she hangs out with, playing cards and drinking wine in their "Golden Girls" years. The film isn't exactly a romance or a comedy or a Lifetime-Movie-of-the-Week. It's a slice-of-life study that I won't ruin for you by giving away the plot.
Much of what we think we know about Carol comes through by way of her clothes, hair and makeup. Like the real Blythe Danner, Carol was always beautiful (old pix on the mantel attest to that)*. She is more beautiful still as she hasn't messed with what nature gave her, and is aging elegantly and gracefully. Blythe Danner is 72, and she plays a woman who easily could be 72.
Carol wears what many stylish women do. The costume designer was Mirren Gordon-Crozier, who has only a few years experience in the business. I'm impressed such a young woman has grasped a look I'm only just now beginning to understand: comfortable yet sophisticated clothing you can wear without thinking about what you are wearing.
|Mirren and her resume (magnifying glass not included)|
Carol (or Mirren doing it for her) must have shopped Chico's and Talbots, Eileen Fisher, Joan Vass and maybe Banana Republic. She's had her accessories "for years". She wears soft colors, loose sweaters and trousers, scarves draped softly rather than tied tightly. She smartly dons a straw hat outside. She has a pair of gold hoops that are her earrings of choice and a classic trench coat, the kind you grab from the closet without thinking. The only "off" piece in the movie is a stiff white blazer printed with oversize green leaves. Carol didn't look comfortable in it, but the scene called for her to be uncomfortable. That jacket helped.
Her hair isn't fussy or tightly styled. It's hard to tell whether it's gray or blonde. Doesn't matter. There are many scenes in which Carol wears no makeup. She looks like she believes in a good moisturizer. When she does get dolled up, she uses a hefty whoosh of eyeliner and mascara, which I think is great. We WOACAS have been cautioned against using prominent makeup, and to that I would like to say, "Balderdash". There's a time and place for everything.
"I'll See You in My Dreams" is definitely worth seeing, as evidenced by the long lines of ladies outside my local cinema the past three weekends. I'm happy to have met Carol and delighted to see Blythe Danner in the starring role, giving such a glowing performance.
I'll also confess to admiring one of Carol's accessories, he of the unlit cigar and major mustache, as played by Sam Elliott.
* Look carefully and you'll notice there is a photo of the real Blythe with her late husband, Bruce Paltrow, as well as a young Gwyneth Paltrow standing in for Carol's daughter as a child.