Fuzzy and Miscast
Please don’t hate me for believing Being the Ricardos is an awful film. After watching it, I couldn’t sleep all night. So I am worried about how Lucille Ball fans will feel watching this movie. It hit me hard, and I’m still upset. The movie deals with one bad week Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz faced while working on I Love Lucy, one of the most popular TV series back in the 1950s. Nicole Kidman and Javier Bardem play the entertainment power couple.
Although we get to see what goes into making a TV episode, even right from the first table reading, the plot meanders and takes liberty with what actually happened. We also learn how excited Lucille was when offered the chance to co-star with Henry Fonda in The Big Street and how less than enthusiastic Desi felt about that.
But the four major problems dealt with in this film include Walter Winchell’s news item about Lucille being a Communist, Desi’s infidelity, Lucille’s commanding behavior on the TV show, and how to handle her pregnancy in “I Love Lucy.”
Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz,
a couple with showbiz pizzazz,
are depicted in this movie
that’s not a film pleasing to me.
Though too miscast to pass the test,
two splendid actors do their best
Kidman and Bardem try hard.
But miss the boat by a long yard.
To cover this, the scenes are blurred.
Fuzzy faces my anger stirred.
I still love Lucy, after all.
Her comedy talent does not fall.
Don’t look for laughs in this picture.
No chuckles here, and that’s for sure.
Strictly drama at what expense?
A film like this seems an offense.
At a June 9, 1954, session of the McCarthy Un-American Activities hearings, Boston lawyer Joseph Welch asked the Senator, “Have you no sense of decency?”
And that’s the question I would like to ask the filmmakers behind Being the Ricardos.
Casting the usually wonderful Kidman as Lucille Ball is like asking Angelina Jolie to play Carol Burnett in a biopic. And putting Bardem, Oscar winner for his villainous role in No Country for Old Men, in the part of music man Desi Arnaz makes no sense at all.
Also, did the people responsible for this project ever think of the Arnaz children who now have to answer embarrassing questions about Being the Ricardos?
I rest my case.
(Released by Amazon Studios and rated “R” by MPAA.)
IMPORTANT NOTE: Lucie Arnaz claims there are lots of laughs but not where you expect them, and film critic Susan Granger, who knew Lucille Ball personally, says that Nicole Kidman’s portrayal was right on target. Evidently, my emotional reaction (like that of so many other Lucille Ball fans) is related strictly to her “I Love Lucy” persona.