WILD ROSE tells the complicated story of Rose-Lynn, a woman on a quest to become a country music star, while also grappling with the responsibilities of being recently released from prison and a young mother of two children.
We meet our main character Rose-Lynn Harlan (Jessie Buckley) packing up a stack of country music CDs, postcards and a map of Nashville into a clear plastic bag. Rose-Lynn on release day from prison after a 12 month sentence she had dream far bigger than her life at home in Glasgow.
Rose-Lynn wants to be the next big thing in country music and feels the only place that can make it happen is Nashville, however with no money and and criminal record it won’t be easy to get there.
Her mum Marion (Julie Walters) has been looking after her 8 year old daughter and 5 year old son whilst Rose-Lynn has been away and has had a enough of Rose-Lynn’s Nashville nonsense.
Forced to take responsibility, Rose-Lynn gets a cleaning job, and forms an unlikely friendship with the wealthy lady of the house Susannah (Sophie Okonedo) who after discovering Rose-Lynn’s love of country music and singing talent encourages her to send a recording to her idol Bob Harris.
Rose-Lynn makes a trip to London to meet Bob Harris and at this point I personally lost a bit of interest. I appreciate it’s extremely difficult to be natural when someone tells you to and Whispering Bob tries so hard but the scene when they finally meet just seems so contrived and out of place. It actually made no difference to the film’s storyline or eventual conclusion so I kind of feel it should have just been left out.
However my interest was reignited slightly when Rose-Lynn also meets real life country musician, Ashley McBryde they don’t speak on camera but use Ashley’s song Girl Going Nowhere to great effect . (You really should check her music out if you get the chance).
Things spiral out of control for Rose-Lynn when she returns to Glasgow, torn between the responsibilities to her children and her musical ambitions and eventually having to face up to the lies she has told Susannah.
Rose-Lynn does eventually make it to Nashville, although maybe all too briefly.
The film does have a satisfying happy ending when after returning home to her family and eventually finding her own three chords and the truth.
If you don’t go in expecting too much for this film then you won’t be disappointed. It will probably resonate more with fans of country music and has a great soundtrack. The story ran out of steam half way through but does pick up again at the end. The last song is amazing where we finally get to see how talented Jessie Buckley really is and receive a masterclass in screen acting from Julie Walters. Unfortunately for me it was perhaps just a little too late.