Mike Leigh’s ANOTHER YEAR is, simply put, generous and amazing. It’s lovely. It’s heartbreaking. It’s been called his best film, and I’m not sure I disagree. Structured around the seasons, stitched together by repetition – scenes of two primary characters, a long-time married couple gardening in a huge community garden – Leigh essentially looks at time as it stretches across very different lives within one small group of friends: those lives that are beautifully stable, and those that are definitively … not.
The old Queen Victoria may have led the more eventful life, but it’s THE YOUNG VICTORIA audiences want to see. However, before we can get to the good stuff, we have to lay the groundwork and, like so many British period dramas, we are first run through a brief history lesson: Victoria (Emily Blunt) is sick (for reasons not included in the lesson) and her mother and her advisor are trying unsuccessfully to get her to sign a Regency. Victoria, however, is determined to be Queen, and as soon as she recovers the suitors come rolling in.