A super musical about a pompous phonetics professor, Henry Higgins (Rex Harrison) who agrees to a wager that he can transform a common flower girl, Eliza (Audrey Hepburn) into a duchess at an embassy ball. One of my all time favorite films.
People will always likely have their own differing opinions about this movie/musical. I have never seen it performed onstage so can only give my opinion as to the film. Again, this was a film which I became heavily attached to when I was younger. The songs are very memorable and it is beautifully photographed. The costumes are gorgeous too, but that goes without saying.
Audrey Hepburn is brilliant as Eliza, and Rex Harrison positively crackles as Higgins. Of course, I can’t help but look at this musical with a modern mindset. I can’t help it, but will try and avoid doing so because it would mean I’d be trying to tick off too many proverbial boxes to please so many people instead of reviewing the film because I like it.
Harrison was brilliant as Higgins, and I wasn’t particularly perturbed by the misogynistic attitudes of Higgins. It’s part and parcel with the character, and the film is set in a society which was male orientated. Make sense? It’s only recently that people have been actively questioning their gendered roles and their place in society. It says a great deal about independence away from male authority figures and keeping your pride in the face of reduced circumstances.
Over all, I really do like this film a great deal. All of the actors brought their own brilliance to their respective roles and aside from the fantastic trio of Rex Harrison, Audrey Hepburn and Wilfrid Hyde-White (Colonel Pickering), I absolutely adored Gladys Cooper here in her role playing Higgins’s mother. She was a steely matriarch who wasn’t willing to be taken for a fool by anyone.
Ultimately, I loved this film. I will almost certainly be revisiting it in the future and I hope it remains a favourite of mine for a long time to come.
MY RATING: **** / *****