So, on the eve of the day which is adored by couples and hated by single people, I decide to watch a movie which will make that inner sadist in me smile(because I’m single). Not a cute smile. You know, the smile which Jake Gyllenhaal gave in Nightcrawler. Yeah, that smile.
If you have watched the movie from the beginning. Right from the opening credits. If you’re reading this, you know what I am talking about. I thought this was a horror movie because of the way the movie began. Later they talk about it and say it was representing “JUNK”. That was the only way they could represent junk?? Just imagine if one of them fart– okay, moving on.
I’ll begin with the performances. What a nerve wracking performance by Aaron Taylor-Johnson. I didn’t have any idea he had that in him. I still can’t believe he has it in him. If Gyllenhaal and Johnson would have switched roles, I wouldn’t have been so shocked but damn. He was almost unrecognisable and everything about him just made my skin crawl.
Amy Adams gives a very stirring performance. Every moment of her transformation is very prominent. My man, Jake Gyllenhaal, gets into yet another character with such ease. Just go back and look at his filmography. He has played so many different characters throughout the past couple of years and, to me, he looks unstoppable. You can throw any character at him and he will just eat it up. Even though, his role in the movie wasn’t a double-role. But he had to play two very distinct roles. Not very different, but there was a thin, thin line between Edward and Tony and Gyllenhaal portrayed it with precision.
Michael Shannon, chips in pretty well as the not-so-honest but helpful police officer. I would have loved to see more of him.
There were three more big names who had small roles i.e. Michael Sheen, Isla Fisher and Armie Hammer. Even though they had extremely small screen-time, Tom Ford utilises that time to establish their character.
The story is penned by Austin Wright and the screenplay is by Tom Ford. This is Tom Ford’s second directorial venture and I think he pretty much knocked it out of the park. I’ll be honest. The manner in which the movie began, I thought it was going be like The Counselor. Big names, artsy production and a neo-noir vibe. Well, it has all of that but it also has a gripping story. So, Susan(Adams) lives with her now husband, Hutton(Armie). She is a huge artist but is having problems in her marital life. Just then, she receives a book from her ex-husband, Edward(Gyllenhaal). As she starts reading, she starts remembering her time with Edward and then she regrets the thing she did to him before breaking up with him. Now, this is a bit spoilery, so SPOILER WARNING.
[SPOILER] So, the book that Edward has written is an allegory to the sense of loss he felt when Susan had left him. It is also a figurative slap to Susan because he shows her that he can actually write a compelling story and the ending of the movie suggests that after all this time, he has not forgiven her. The notion that he has not forgiven her is more hurtful for Susan because she was ready to have sex with him, because she had taken off her wedding ring. So, even though Edward didn’t get to see her sorry state, Susan saw how desperate she has become to break out of this misery and I think that is the most fitting punishment for anyone.[SPOILER]
I was amazed at the balance that Tom Ford kept between the gritty realism of the fictional story and the polish and falseness of the real world. Oh, I just got my mind blown. The fictional world was more real than the real world. Amazing.
The colour and the cinematography was very attractive. There were some transitions which were used to draw parallels between the real and the fictional and it was beautiful. It felt like I was reading a book, or in this case, the book. I am sure I have missed out on the much finer nuances which are in this movie, but right now I don’t have the strength to watch it a second time. Not in a negative way. I didn’t expect this movie to make such a strong impact. I’ll try to deconstruct it later, sometime but not right now.
FINAL VERDICT – All you single people and all you heartbroken dudes and duderinas. Watch this movie and take some notes from this movie. Do not be brash and blunt with your comeback. If you have to make a comeback, then do it like Edward. #DoItLikeEdward
All you couples. Watch it with your significant other, so that you can cherish what you have on the day, when love is celebrated throughout the world.
All you regular people. Definitely, definitely watch this. I am glad that this movie got a nomination in the Academy Awards and I hope all of these actors keep doing such amazing roles and I hope Tom Ford keeps giving such amazing movies.
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Susan – “Why are you so driven to write?”
Edward – “I guess it’s a way of keeping things alive. You know, saving things that will eventually die. And if I write it down, then, it’ll last forever.”