What did this movie teach me? I am totally justified in loving Hugh Dancy.
Yes it has a slow pace, so what, the film is slow and beautiful, meaningful and almost melancholic in tone. Looking at relationships, questions of fulfillment in life and whether right decisions were made along the way; this is a film to make you think about how you view the world and people's lives, and ultimately it makes you realise that there are no mistakes in life.
I thought the ensemble cast was wonderful, to me there wasn't a weak performance among them, no matter how big or small their role was each actor personified their character beautifully. The film is also a visual treat, with the 1950s portion of the film set around a cliff top house with surrounding forest it is stunning.
I found the story interesting and complex, and loved the shift between the present and the past. The direction of these changing sequences was done beautifully and almost flawlessly. My only problem with films that use this technique is that sometimes I am enjoying a certain period of the film more than the other, however in this case both stories were as captivating as the other. The mother on her deathbed having hallucinations, alongside her two daughters dealing with their own issues in life (Toni Collete's performance is especially touching, and her character's story is equally as interesting as her mother's) is just as intriguing and entertaining to watch as the young Ann's story about that fateful time in her life, her best friend's wedding, that would ultimately shape her character for the rest of her life.
A beautiful movie with some solid performances, highly enjoyable.