Tuesday, 12 January 2016

45 Years

45 Years includes this sage observation about why women can
hold it together at weddings and funerals, but fellers burst out
in tears: we keep it all inside every day.
Dir: Andrew Hey
Starring:  Tom Court Nay; Charlotte Rampling

Imagine being married to someone... for 45 years... then finding out they had someone else on their mind the whole time. Sure, even if you have "one true love," and that person is taken from you, you still have the right to move on and marry, right? Yes, yes you do. But the upshot is that you have to forget about that first person and be sure that the one you marry is your "one true love." Court Nay makes the fatal mistake of living his life cautiously, with the shadow of his first love behind him at all time. When this is revealed the tragic Rampling, it's too much to bear for the audience and the cast and the crew and everyone. It's a life wasted, but the waste isn't found out until the end. That feeling of sickness deep within your stomach. It's possibly a uniquely British thing. That pent up emotion that we never speak of. Holding thoughts and ideas inside us, eating us up; we ignore them but they're there. Mike Leigh's the real master of tapping into that uncomfortable explosion of emotion, pent up like the steam inside an espresso machine. And he does it with comedy. Andrew Hey makes a good go of it, too. The overbearing heaviness of 45 Years contrasts nicely with the everyday scenarios of eating, shopping and planning a party. It's pulled off as well as could be so that the final dance is almost unbearable in its dull sense of renewal. It will make you wince, but we should all take away the lessons on offer here: don't go walking in the Swiss Alps.

Rating: Great

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