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Review: The Lady

The life of Aung San Suu Kyi falls prey to Luc Besson's filmmaking
By PETER KEOUGH  |  April 10, 2012
2.0 2.0 Stars

In addition to making dumb action flicks, Luc Besson has another hobby — turning the lives of valiant women into mediocre movies. Like 1999's The Messenger: The Story of Joan of Arc, and now this biopic about a modern day Maid of Orleans, Aung San Suu Kyi (Michelle Yeoh). The nemesis of the junta ruling her native Burma and winner of the Nobel Peace Prize in 1991, she served more than 15 years under house arrest, isolating her from her children and British husband (a weirdly mannered David Thewlis). A challenge to any filmmaker, such a passive scenario stymies Besson. His crude attempts at poignance reduce Kyi's heroism to clichés backed by Pachebel's Canon, with intermittent scenes of suspense involving phone calls, the copying of flyers, and the like. He's good at atrocities, however, and the villainous junta generals are more engaging than the two-dimensional heroes. This lady, who just won a historic election, apparently triumphing over the tyrants, deserves better.

  Topics: Reviews , Movie Reviews, Luc Besson, Aung San Suu Kyi
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