A troubled single mom dreams of country stardom.
Jessie Buckley deserves to be a movie star, said Katie Rife in AVClub.com. As the title character of this drama about a young Scottish ex-con who dreams of Nashville fame, the former stage actress is “a raging cyclone of a woman.” When she goes stomping through the streets of Glasgow in her fringed leather jacket and white cowboy boots, she “practically commands the eye to follow her across the screen—and that’s before she opens her mouth.” Her singing voice turns out to be great, too—“like a sugar cube dissolving in a glass of whiskey.” But talent alone won’t redeem Buckley’s Rose-Lynn, said Stephanie Zacharek in Time. She’s “neither a wholly selfish character nor a selfless one,” and as she chases her dream while struggling, post-prison, to reconnect with her two young children, she “does the wrong thing, over and over again.” As Rose-Lynn’s disapproving mother, Julie Walters conveys “just the right amount of love and despair,” said David Sims in TheAtlantic.com. By contrast, I couldn’t stop rooting for Rose-Lynn, and not just because “that’s what these stories require.” In truth, “I was also just desperate to watch her sing as many times as possible.”