Cast: Tom Hiddleston plays Freddie Page, a carefree, live in the moment type of guy who falls in love with a married woman. Rachel Weisz plays Hester Collyer, a lonely married woman who is in an unhappy marriage to a judge. Hester has a history of suicide attempts. Simon Russel Beale plays Sir William Collyer, the judge who Hester is married to. Other actors included Anne Mitchell, Jolyon Coy, Karl Johnson, Harry Hadden-Paton and Sarah Kants to name a few.
Basic movie facts: I couldn’t find a lot of behind the scenes facts with this film.
Pros: If you liked the actor who played “Loki” in “Thor” and “The Avengers”, then you’ll love him in this movie. Tom Hiddleston is such a talented actor in this film and it shows with his dramatic dialogues. Rachel Weisz is amazing too with all the issues she portrayed with her character. This is a melodramatic film which explores the development, stresses and finalization of an affair mixed in with two very different people who were never soulmates to begin with.
Cons: I didn’t have much knowledge of the plot as I began this movie. I had never even heard of this movie until a few days ago and that was only because I am trying to watch every movie Tom is in before October. As the movie progresses in the beginning, you hear a brief narration by Rachel Weisz who plays Hester. It was not clear as to why she was so glum and not talking. I didn’t know who the old man was in the room with her. Was she with her psychologist? Was he her uncle? Father? Grandfather? None of this was explained to me in the beginning, so I was a little confused as to who he was. You later find out who he is and why she is so glum. Other than that, that was my only complaint about this movie. Everything else was fine.
Cinematography: German born Florian Hoffmeister was the director of photography for this film. Most of the film is shot with dark tones that smartly reflects the tone of the melodramatic story. There are several places where the actors are standing in a position that makes them look like a still photograph in a brief pause as if they want you to reflect on what they just said. There were times when I thought the movie paused or froze, but it’s just the way the movie is filmed. The camera span is gentle and flows well with the other scenes.
Music score: Samuel Barber composed the original score for this film. Having Samuel compose the scores for this film was a smart move by the film company due to Samuel being a Sergeant in the USAF during World War II, so he was able to reflect that time period in his music with what the story was trying to convey. The songs were all sad and dramatic, but lively at the same time with memorable tunes. The music was definitely the other main character in the film as I think most music scores should be.
Favorite quote: When Freddie tells Hester they can never be together.
Freddie: Today, the letter. The suicide attempt. We are lethal to each other. You can’t expect a bloke to go on after he’s driven someone to suicide, much as he loves her.
Audience reaction: I loved this film!
Relatability: I wasn’t sure how much I should say about how relatable I felt with this film. First of all, I related very much to Freddie and his love for life and being carefree. One of my ex-boyfriends from several years ago also had a history of suicide attempts much like Hester and we were in the same situation, albeit my ex-boyfriend was not married. Unlike Freddie, I did not have an angry fit about finding out about the history of attempts. In fact, it only made me more worried for him. Just like Freddie, I basically said the exact same thing to my ex-boyfriend about not being together anymore as a result. It’s hard to go on when someone wants to end their life and you are part of the reason why. It really affects you. It changes the whole dynamics of the relationship. You only want them to get professional help and rebuild their soul and spirit. My ex-boyfriend and I continue to be buddies and I am happy to say he’s gone back to college and is doing well with life. He’s happy and promises to never attempt to end his life again. I, on the other hand, continue to make sure he’s ok and doing well. I watched this movie with a professional point of view. I’ve attended numerous seminars and workshops for professionals in dealing with this kind of thing with our clients. Rachel Weisz, in my opinion, played perfectly a text book version of someone who didn’t commit suicide, but used the last strength within her to continue on with life even after several attempts. I haves= seen this with many clients of mine. This is a deep and moving movie with superb acting that touches two very deep and complicated matters of the human heart, spirit and strength.
Click here to watch the entire film. There is a brief scene which makes this film Rated R, other than that, it’s safe to watch the rest of the time.