Saw it this evening at the Aero Theatre. Liked it, although the experience of the film itself was eclipsed by the Q&A afterward with Davies, who was very generous and animated. Some things I learned about the film:
Davies did not originally choose the material; the producers came to him wanting to adapt a Terence Rattigan play. Since The Browning Version
and Separate Tables
were already filmed memorably, they settled on one that had not been done cinematically to Davies' satisfaction. (He didn't have kind things to say about the performances in the 1955 version.)
Although they used a Panaflex camera, the lenses they shot with were 40 years old. For some scenes, the cinematographer placed a piece of nylon behind the lens to give the film a softer look.
Davies doesn't go to new movies. He says he can no longer suspend his disbelief. But one day, when he was bored with the book he was reading, he turned on the telly and saw the most luminous woman onscreen. Looking her name up in the end credits, he called his producer and asked if he'd ever heard of an actress named Rachel Weisz. "Terence," said his producer, "you're the only one who hasn't
The film is about love. The three main characters all need a certain kind of love from each other, but they are unable to get it, and the others are unable to give it. It would have been easy enough to make the "cold" husband an ogre, but there are no villains in this film.
The way Davies weaves the past and present together is dreamily seamless, equalled only by Resnais.
There is a bit of Dennis Potter in Davies' affection for old pop songs.
The movie is very sad.
Edited by Nathaniel, 12 March 2012 - 12:29 AM.