Mrs. Harris Goes to Paris
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Leslie Manville and an impressive international cast bring Paul Gallico’s beloved novel, about a working-class woman desiring a Dior dress, to life.
London, 1957. Ada Harris is a cleaner who one day sees a client’s Dior dress and falls for its beauty. Determined to own one, fortuitous circumstances find her with the money to do so and Ada embarks on a trip to Paris to purchase the dress of her dreams. But not everything is plain sailing. Individuals at the top of the company resent her presence, but their snobbery is offset by the reality of a struggling business and the need to take Ada’s cash. However, she finds friends further down the company and her presence soon begins to affect how its future will turn out.
Manville gives a spirited performance as Ada Harris, while Isabelle Huppert is on fine prickly form as Claudine Colbert, one of the heads of Dior. Their scenes together crackle with electricity, while Alba Baptista, Lucas Bravo, Jason Isaacs, Anna Chancellor, Freddie Fox and Lambert Wilson all offer fine support. Anthony Fabian’s direction – he also adapted Gallico’s novel with Carroll Cartwright – perfectly captures the era, offsetting the drabness of post-war London against the rectilinear beauty of Ada’s object of desire.