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Thread: The Father

  1. #1
    Administrator Ezee E's Avatar
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    The Father


    Dune - *** 1/2
    Raw - ** 1/2
    The Last Duel - ***


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  2. #2
    Administrator Ezee E's Avatar
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    Close to a horror movie, The Father might also be the best of the stage-to-film movies for 2020. Plenty to analyze, emotional (and not over the top) performances, and clever/subtle direction.

    I'm not particularly sold on the ending since it basically ends where we started, but it's certainly not boring.

    Sony Pictures Classics is really dropping the ball on the marketing of this one, because the previews and posters make it look boring as shit

    Dune - *** 1/2
    Raw - ** 1/2
    The Last Duel - ***


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  3. #3
    Cinematographer Mal's Avatar
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    How did you see this?

  4. #4
    Administrator Ezee E's Avatar
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    Quote Quoting Zac Efron (view post)
    How did you see this?
    Landmark Theater by me.

    Dune - *** 1/2
    Raw - ** 1/2
    The Last Duel - ***


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  5. #5
    Administrator Ezee E's Avatar
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    Eventive Streaming Options

    Here's some streaming options for it, and it supports a local film festival too.

    Dune - *** 1/2
    Raw - ** 1/2
    The Last Duel - ***


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  6. #6
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    Might be that the skimpiness fits the story as stage play better, but played out here the film seems a tad underimagined when it comes to details of the lead's and his family's lives. They exist as signposts to get Hopkins unmoored so clearly to us that some of the chronology scrambling feels a bit choreographed, however effective it overall is. We get confused and terrified on behalf of his tenuous grasp on reality, but never as overwhelmed as we should fully be if its aim is to enter his state of mind; the audience is given too much space in between.

    On the other hand, this inspired concept is uniquely suited to film adaptation, the location restrictiveness integral to its whole being so that in halfway competent hands it would never feel stagey. And Zeller does a stellar job translating it on screen, weaving in and out of rooms and characters, with production details and faces changing moment-to-moment just right. Colman's marvelously reactive performance is heartbreaking in its ambivalence of feelings, but this is Hopkins' show, and he delivers a tour-de-force of vulnerability, portraying the character's struggle to keep the descending blankness at bay while futilely trying to not let others see it. To see one of the most erudite performers stripping all traces of himself away until he's barely coherent is utterly devastating to witness. 8/10
    Midnight Run (1988) - 9
    The Smiling Lieutenant (1931) - 8.5
    The Adventures of Robinhood (1938) - 8
    Sisters (1973) - 6.5
    Shin Godzilla (2016) - 7.5

  7. #7
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    Heartbreaking, disturbing, even scary are all valid adjectives for this Alzheimer drama that takes the approach of putting us inside the head of the afflicted person. This idea is so obvious that I wonder that it hasn't been made before but no example comes to mind. The entire cast is magnificent but of course it's Hopkins who gets the spotlight here. He belongs to the breed of actors that can be themselves and someone else with every performance, and with this and The two Popes he seems to have recovered the taste for challenging roles.

    Glad someone else noticed Olivia Colman and Olivia Williams are roughly the same person.

    I still have to watch Sound of Metal but this and Mank are by far the best movies up for Best Picture.
    Last edited by Grouchy; 04-03-2021 at 08:49 PM.

  8. #8
    The toll of dementia is cumulative, slowly unravelling the mind until nothing feels familiar and the only memories left are those of a child. When Anthony [
    ] it is something that could potentially come off as ingenuous or campy, even. However, because this film, at its core, is about empathizing with the lived experience of these characters, it is heart-wrenching and resonant in a way that is unique to this otherwise hackneyed plot line.

    From a technical perspective, the structure of the film earns all the effusive praise it has received. As with all non-traditionally constructed narratives, this could have come off as a gimmick had it not been for the pivotal role it plays in conveying Anthony's state of mind (in the same way that Memento earns its structure, except with more relevance to the general viewer). Although the superb editing and assured direction help it work as a movie, without either of these leads, this is an interesting but ultimately mediocre film at best. Yes, Sir Anthony delivers a performance that is physical, desperate, and mostly quiet. The way that sadness and confusion well in his eyes without any form of guile is something to behold.

    However, for my money, Olivia Colman is the MVP. What sets The Father apart is that it provides a compelling story for Anne, the daughter of the titular father. In my experience, movies of this ilk tend to focus on the person with a profound neurological disorder or the people who are affected. In The Father, on the other had, the caretaker is a fully fleshed out character, adding emotional and narrative complexity. Much of the credit for this goes to Olivia Colman. Indeed, she elevates what could have been a throwaway role into something rich and devastating. She also makes everyone around her better. Rufus Sewell and Imogen Poots are fine, but also broad and obvious. With Colman to give life to these sequences, though, the characters come off as somehow human instead of props to advance the story line (even with Colman's assist some of these lines and plot points are blech).

    On the whole, this is a very good and potentially great movie. It is not an easy watch: the subject matter is bleak and the acting is achingly authentic. Yet, it is a film that will stick with me. At least, until it doesn't. If nothing else, by making such an empathetic movie, Zeller gives us a glimpse into a fate that will probabilistically affect someone reading this post. I'm not sure what that means, but it's not nothing.

    ****/*****
    Last edited by quido8_5; 06-10-2021 at 09:14 PM.
    Stuff I've Watched out of *****

    The Last Duel - ***
    Only Murders in the Building: **
    Squid Games: **.5

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