“Albert Nobbs”: Just looking for happiness


When I saw this trailer, my mom did a double take, she asked me, “Is that Glenn Close…playing a man?” Why, yes mom. Yes, it  is. Clearly, this film was confusing. Is she supposed to be a man? Is she a lesbian or is she just a cross-dresser? In the end, I just found that “Albert Nobbs” is just a person looking for happiness.

“Albert Nobbs” takes place in 19th century Ireland where she works as a waiter at the Morrison’s Hotel. No one knows she is a woman. Albert has been Albert for a very long time. Albert has been saving money to finally open a tobacconist shop. I find that ironic because later in the film, it is clear Albert has never touched tobacco. Albert just likes the idea of owning a shop and being happy.

Albert feels safer as a man after a horrible childhood experience. Hubert Page, a painter played by Janet McTeer forms a special connection of understanding. Hubert is also a woman in case you didn’t know. A great moment in the film is when they put on dresses and look very awkward, having not wore one for a very long time. It is also somewhat freeing to see Albert run around in a dress, looking so unrestricted.

Hubert Page is also married to another woman and Albert too wants to find a wife. It is misleading in the trailer to believe Helen played Mia Waiskowska is the one.

Albert has never known any other life besides the one of serving tables. That is how he gets by. It it very hard to write this discussion because I am not sure what to call Albert.  In the end, Glenn Close has played a very unique role. Even more unique than my love for her as Cruella Deville.

I’m sure many people won’t like or get this movie, but as always I’m glad that I had a chance to admire such a unique role. It doesn’t matter if she was a man or woman. It mattered that she was searching for something just like every other person, love and happiness.

The only thing that I don’t get is how the ending song did not get nominated for an Oscar for best song Glenn Close wrote the closing song “Lay your head down” with Brian Byrne. It is an endearing, sweet song performed by Sinead O’Connor which captures the movie’s tone. Such a shame on the Academy.

Besides starring in the film and writing the song, Close wrote the screenplay and produced the film. That shows some motivation and drive.

Oscar Nomiantions:

  1. Best Actress in a Leading Role: Glenn Close
  2. Best Makeup
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