Grand Hotel is a juxtaposition of life and death in its uncertainty, for no matter how brief the period is, one lives.
Goulding’s romance of the tale is between the ingenuity of the essential points and the reach for the characters through it. It is a very well originally written tale whose adaptation might not be gripping but its layered thought provoking tale is too good to reminisce about the loopholes. And mind you, there are no such inedible clause in the original play by Drake but it’s the execution that falls short handed in here. It is calculative and frequently aware of the trajectory in each frame. But neither the makers nor the actors are enjoying it. The high pitched dramatic sequences to which the movie relies upon, even those aren’t glorified properly. They are good at doing their homework, but it shouldn’t feel like a homework in the first place.
Considering the intensity of the concept, the sloppy writing that focuses on lightening the mood, often shucks away the integrity. Nevertheless with such sharp abhorrent depiction of the society, fame and ignorance, the feature not only soars but lifts up the audience to its higher concept. The performance is decently acted out by the cast if not excellent, since it lacks the spark that should boost us and the storyline forward. Especially the first time, when both the lead characters comes on screen together. The first act of the storyline actually builds up to that moment.
And it is on that moment, where the Barrymore and Garbo were supposed to portray the kissing-the-ring infatuation that they feel for each other and instead misses a golden opportunity. The supporting characters are more illuminating in here than the lead ones, they possess the cutthroat politics, morale conflicts and depiction of both the sides of the coin that rattles and calms the nature of a human. Grand Hotel is a juxtaposition of life and death in its uncertainty, for no matter how brief the period is, one lives.