Disappointing country music drama that fails to hit the required emotional high notes, thanks to a confused, cliché-riddled script, poor direction and an unconvincing performance from a badly miscast Gwyneth Paltrow.
Paltrow gives it her best but is so conspicuously doing country. We're meant to believe she has spent half her life staring into a vodka bottle, but she glows like she's just stepped out of a yoga retreat.
This enjoyably OTT drama-with-songs-in-it was monstered in January by American reviewers, who were maybe expecting a highbrow, subtle and meditative drama in which Gwyneth Paltrow is an alcoholic banjo player.
Like last year's Crazy Heart, this film traces the journey of a struggling addict country singer. And while the film is somewhat sentimental and simplistic, it features some strong acting that manages to draw us in.
The story's shifting perspectives and sympathies (the distinctions between the 'authentic' singer-songwriter and the 'pop' vocalist prove ambiguous) result in a music-centric work that feels more honest (while being less entertaining) than 'Crazy Heart.'