Albert Nobbs struggles to survive in late 19th-century Ireland, where women aren't encouraged to be independent. Posing as a man so she can work as a butler in Dublin's most elegant hotel, Albert meets a handsome painter and looks to escape the lie she has been living.
In 19th century Dublin, Albert Nobbs, an eccentric man in the latter part of middle age, works as a waiter in Morrison's Hotel run by the stingy and controlling Marge Baker. Albert is hard working and saves his money so that one day he will be able to eke out a better life for himself by owning his own business rather than work at the hotel. Beyond his work colleagues, he is all alone in the world. One day, a man named Hubert Page is hired by Mrs. Baker to paint one of the rooms in the hotel. She forces Hubert to share Albert's bed for the one night he is required to stay to complete the work, much to Albert's horror. Hubert discovers the reason Albert did not want to share a room with him. But rather than the issue being a problem, Hubert shows Albert that he can follow a slightly different life path than the one he envisioned for himself - one closer to the life that Hubert leads with his wife Cathleen - which includes getting married and having a wife to support him emotionally. ... Written by
Technically, the film Albert Nobbs won't be released in the United States until late January, and I would think that would disqualify it as a contender for the upcoming Oscars (although the buzz around says otherwise, so I don't know how that works) but it would be a real shame if true because Glenn Close is strictly at her best since Dangerous Liaisons as Albert Nobbs, a male waiter living a secret life. Janet McTeer is a bit more hammy as Hubert Page, another woman living life as a man, and she's not as convincing as Close is as a man, but she still has her moments, like the way she walks all manly on the beach even when wearing a dress. Mia Wasikowska also gives a supporting actress nomination worthy role as sort of what Cécile was to Liaisons. I really hated the ending of this film and would have preferred something a little less Remains of the Day and a little more uplifting and hopeful, so as a film I don't think it is best picture material but Glenn Close certainly deserves her long overdue Oscar for this stunning performance.
I do have to wonder how this got an R rating though. There is nothing R rated in it whatsoever; the only nudity involves two very quick flashes of breasts only to establish that the characters are actually female, and other than that, there is no foul language or violence or anything. The MPPA should reconsider what I believe to be a biased rating that it came up with based only on the fact that the film hints at lesbianism.
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