‘Falling for Figaro’ Review: When the Overtures Are Operatic
I must admit it’s refreshing to see a plus-size woman not only nab the promotion and the hunky guy, but throw it all away within the first 15 minutes. Unfortunately, my plaudits for “Falling for Figaro” mostly end there.
Directed by Ben Lewis, this thoroughly generic and often monotonous romance about an aspiring opera singer who falls in love with the competition does, on another positive note, have the virtue of never succumbing to played-out body image commentary.
Millie (Danielle Macdonald), a whip-smart but unfulfilled finance executive whose boyfriend worships the ground she walks on, runs off to the Scottish Highlands to study with a renowned vocal coach, the sharp-tongued Meghan (Joanna Lumley). Millie demonstrates potential, drawing the jealous irritation of Meghan’s longtime pupil, Max (Hugh Skinner), a working-class chap who bristles at his wealthy American rival’s sense of entitlement. Millie, after all, pays an abnormally high rate for to study with Meghan.
Like too many movies about singers, “Falling for Figaro” builds toward a shot at fame and glory. Naturally, Millie and Max start to get cozy just as the big “Singer of Renown” contest approaches, complicating their plans to stay focused on their training. Good thing their (relatively muted) emotional turmoil actually spices up the quality of their performances, and kudos to Skinner for bolstering the film’s only convincing character arc when Max’s infatuation with Millie veers into fittingly operatic territory. As for Millie, well, she had it all in the beginning and she has it all in the end, not that you’d expect anything different.
Falling for Figaro
Not rated. Running time: 1 hour 44 minutes. In theaters and available to rent or buy on Apple TV, Google Play and other streaming platforms and pay TV operators.
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