Finding Your Feet is a Richard Loncraine film – he also directed Richard III and Wimbledon so can swing between Shakespeare and rom-coms (alas no Zoms, yet). But to call Finding Your Feet a rom-com is to do it a disservice. Yes, there is romance (often failed romance) and lots of comedic moments and lines, but it is so much more.
It does humour as the British do so well. I, and the rest of the audience, laughed out loud many times. It has a very English feel – from the opening aerial views over posh Tudor-style homes in Surry to London with Big Ben, tube stations (like playing Monopoly), double-decker buses, black hacks and barges. You'll recognise a lot of the landmarks and I found myself playing "I've been there."
I don't want to be a spoiled sport and give away too much of the storyline or any of the amusing situations the characters find themselves in, nor reveal any of the jokes. I am sure you will have a giggle and maybe even get a bit teary (like I did). It's not Four Weddings and a Funeral, but you get the idea. Some of the best lines are delivered dead-pan by "JoLum" who is her brilliant self.
It is a Who's Who of the British film industry: Imelda Staunton (Harry Potter, Paddington, and Pride); Cecile Imrie (The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel, Calendar Girls and Bridget Jones's Diary); Timothy Spall (Mr Turner, Harry Potter and Denial); Joanna Lumley (Absolutely Fabulous, The Avengers and Paddington 2); and John Sessions (Whose Line is it Anyway?, The Iron Lady and Florence Foster Jenkins).
The plot centres around Lady Sandra Abbot's (Staunton in fine form) disintegrating marriage. Her large country estate home is contrasted with her sister Bif's (Imrie) Council estate home. Their lifestyles couldn't be more different but they intersect and clash with much amusement and pathos. One is scatter-brained and kooky, the other is uptight and stressed. Like the contrast between coral hippy beads and leopard-print pants, and Hermes scarves with cashmere sweaters. They are definitely cut from different cloth but they are more similar than they realise.
It is at dance classes that the two estranged sisters find themselves and each other The dancing is lots of fun – from the Hokey Cokey (or what we Aussies call Hokey Pokey), the twist, samba, and waltz to mash-ups and flash mobs. The music is also varied and playful: The Andrew Sisters, 1970s disco, Rolling Stones, ballads, classical and soul. You are sure to find something you like. At the end of the screening I attended, the audience applauded. You don't see that very often in modern cinemas, so it is a measure of the enjoyment that was derived from this very likeable film. Have a naughty Sherry before you go to get into the spirit.