The first impression for Unfinished Song is that it is a sentimental movie that would make you fall asleep before it ends. It is written and directed by Paul Andrew Williams and about Arthur Harris (Terence Stamp) and his wife Marion (Vanessa Redgrave).
Marion has cancer and Arthur wants her to stay at home. She is a member of a local choir that is led by young and sexy Elizabeth (Gemma Artenton). Marion’s health is deteriorating and Arthur becomes more desperate as he encounters thoughts of living without his wife. He becomes more involved in the choir as the group prepares for a national choir competition.
Stamp and Redgrave are two living legends of Hollywood. They manage to make something out of this predictable movie. They both sing in Unfinished Song. Stamp’s voice has the perfect blend of gravity and lightness. His performance in the movie is award winning of a man on the brink of turning into an emotionless person that is moved to redemption by music.
His onscreen chemistry with Redgrave is flawless. She brings warmth and humor in the face of death. Her rendition of True Colors by Cyndi Lauper is guaranteed to make your eyes tear up. Unfinished Song manages to show a long marriage without any expository dialogue or flashbacks. It is done via their gestures and looks.
Christopher Eccleston plays their son who has issues with his father. While he is effective, it feels like his character is underutilized in the movie.
Gemma Artenton is sweet and caring as Elizabeth. She tries hard to penetrate Arthur’s cold exterior to make him be involved with the choir.
Filmmaker Paul Andrew Williams proves he can make any genre. The movie benefits from good performances. It features the perfect balance of comedy and sappy moments that doesn’t make viewers into an emotional wreck in the end. It shows the characters bond, care and help each other through tough times.