Maggie, a 50-year-old widow, desperately needs some money to pay for a medical treatment for her ill grandson. After one attempt at trying to find a job, Maggie finds herself roaming the ... See full summary »
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Maggie, a 50-year-old widow, desperately needs some money to pay for a medical treatment for her ill grandson. After one attempt at trying to find a job, Maggie finds herself roaming the streets of London Soho. Her eye is caught by a small poster in the window of a 'shop' called "Sexy World" which reads: "Hostess wanted". Too desperate and lost to realize what she does she enters. Micky, the owner, is embarrassed at first, but intrigued by Maggie, he decides to have fun and offers her the job. Maggie courageously gets to know her first anonymous customers, eventually using Irina Palm as her stage name. Maggie, who applies herself in order to keep her job, fascinates Mickey. Written by
When Maggie enters the office of Miki to accept the job, he's seen playing a videogame. The game music is from Super Mario, and when he raises his eyes to look at Maggie, the death sound is heard. See more »
When Maggie is reading the letter from the bank, rejecting her request for a loan, the letter clearly addresses her as 'Mr'. See more »
When I saw the trailers it looked like a European film and settings, but luckily this movie was in English directed by a German born Belgium director Sam Garbarski.
The story is in a small village near London about a widowed grand-mother Maggie (Marianne Faithful), whose grand son has to undergo treatment in Australia. She has a son Tom (Kevin Bishop) and daughter in law Sarah (Siobhan Hewlett) who can not earn that much to afford the trip to Australia. Maggie loves the grandson a lot but does not have any skills to do work she has never worked in her entire life. After being rejected at many places, in search of work she lands up in the Soho area (red light district of London) in Mikky's (Miki Manojlovic) sex club / restaurant. Very shy and hesitant she agrees to the work of masturbating men for a decent sum of Pounds 900 per week. Within no time she becomes the famous Irina Palm (pseudo name) for her skills. Maggie finds a new confidence and self-independence through this new role which she never thought would become her respected profession. She borrows money from Miki and gives to her son, who becomes suspicious and when he follows her and knows about her new profession and is deeply hurt. He wants her to take the money back and leave the dirty profession.
The movie is about the journey through the mind of Maggie. Her hesitations, her doubts, her fears, her joy, her confidence, her love, and her grandiose everything is perfect.
Marianne Faithful who started her career as a singer, and later got involved in film acting looks beautiful (just google her name and see how beautiful she was in her young days) and has acted honorably in portraying the character of Maggie to its core. She speaks more in her silences, stares and glances than with words. She was the perfect casting by the Director Sam. A special mention of veteran actor Miki Manojlovic who has played the dark character of Mikky with so much punch and humanness that it is remarkable and not easy to forget. Both Marianne and Miki sparkles the screen with their historic.
A very well directed film by Sam this is just his fifth directional project. He has also co-written the script with Philip Blasband. Cinematography by Christophe Beacarne is wonderful in capturing the life of a small British village to the dark and dingy streets and hotels of Soho especially the beginning shot of the village through bird's view and hand held shots of dark back alleys of Soho.
At one point in the movie when Maggie is forced by her son to leave the work, I was longing for Marianne to go back to her profession because that had brought her self- dignity and self-esteem. But I will not say the ending and spoil of interest.
A very good sensitive movie! (Stars 7.5 out of 10)
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