Supernova

Supernova (****)

Director: Harry Macqueen. Cast: Colin Firth, Stanley Tucci, Lori Campbell, James Dreyfus, Ian Drysdale.

Unbelievable! This is the third film I’ve seen in a week about ‘dementia’ (the others being “The Father” and “Relic”). It seems to be the hot topic of the moment. Having said that, I have to be honest, I really really liked this one!!The subject itself is obviously bound to break your heart (and it bloody did! I was real wreck during several sequences), but here it’s all done incredibly tastefully, thanks to a smart and seemingly simple script which mixes wit and poignancy in the most restrained, sensitive and unflashy way, and all the better for it. At the centre of this Colin Firth and Stanley Tucci give two wonderfully nuanced performances as Sam and Tusker, a couple who has obviously been together for ages, and they’re now trying to figure out how to live with the impending shadow of mortality, as Tusker (Tucci) has been diagnosed with dementia. Their chemistry in the film is palpable (It helps that the two actors know each other and have been friends for decades) and it’s what makes the film so beautiful and affecting, but also so unexpectedly funny and real: their deadpan snappy dialogue as they’re lovingly arguing like an old married couple at the start of the film, as they’re driving a camper van across the north of England, is priceless and sets the tone for their relationship for the rest of the film. Despite everything they always try their hardest to keep it light because as it’s said in the film “You’re not supposed to mourn someone when they’re still alive” .Later on a scene where Sam reads aloud a letter written by Tusker where he essentially says goodbye to all his friends is heartbreakingly like few things I’ve seen lately (and crucially without being cheesy).Director Harry Macqueen handles it all with great care and sensitivity. He’s also not afraid of silences (which are often a lot more telling than dialogue) as he allows his actors to be quiet in several scenes just looking at each other. And while on the surface not a lot seems to happen in the film, underneath the emotion journey is a devastating tsunami.

The fim is been shown at the #LondonFilmFestival

After that it’s out in November.

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