HOME |  JOIN |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
Newest Reviews
Levelling, The
Dog Days
Annabelle Creation
Once Upon a Time in Shanghai
Sssssss
Woman in Question, The
Atomic Blonde
Doulos, Le
Okja
Bob le Flambeur
Wedding in White
Léon Morin, Priest
Napping Princess, The
Scorpions and Miniskirts
Berlin File, The
Beaches of Agnès, The
Blue Jeans
Garokawa - Restore the World
Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets
Gleaners & I, The
Peter of Placid Forest
Golden Bird, The
War for the Planet of the Apes
One Sings, the Other Doesn't
Great Gilly Hopkins, The
Little Prince and the Eight-Headed Dragon
Doom
Cléo from 5 to 7
Ballerina
Night Flight from Moscow
   
 
Newest Articles
Music, Love and Flowers: Monterey Pop on Blu-ray
The Melville Mood: His Final Two Films on The Melville Collection Blu-ray
Always Agnès: 3 from The Varda Collection Blu-ray
Re: Possession of Vehicles - Killer Cars, Trucks and a Vampire Motorcycle
The Whicker Kicker: Whicker's World Vols 5&6 on DVD
The Empress, the Mermaid and the Princess Bride: Three 80s Fantasy Movies
Witching Hour: Hammer House of Horror on Blu-ray
Two Sides of Sellers: The Party vs The Optimists
Norse Code: The Vikings vs The Long Ships
Over the Moon - Space: 1999 The Complete Series on Blu-ray Part 2
   
 
  Away from Her Going Going GoneBuy this film here.
Year: 2006
Director: Sarah Polley
Stars: Julie Christie, Gordon Pinsent, Olympia Dukakis, Michael Murphy, Alberta Watson, Wendy Crewson, Deanna Dezmari, Clare Coulter, Thomas Hauff, Grace Lynn Kung, Lili Francks, Andrew Moodie, Judy Sinclair, Tom Harvey, Carolyn Heatherington, Stacey LaBerge
Genre: Drama, Romance
Rating:  6 (from 2 votes)
Review: Grant Anderson (Gordon Pinsent) has noticed his wife Fiona (Julie Christie) has been acting oddly recently. She puts the frying pan in the fridge, goes on cross country skiing treks in search of she knows not what, and is becoming increasingly forgetful. They both realise that something is wrong, and fixing labels onto the kitchen drawers to remind her where to put things isn't going to be much help for much longer. Fiona is suffering from Alzheimer's disease, and the time is fast approaching when Grant has to admit her to the local retirement home...

For her first film as director, actress Sarah Polley opted to stay behind the camera and not take a role for herself, and adapted Alice Munro's short story "The Bear Came Over the Mountain", a tale of a couple in their sixties who have to cope with one partner suffering the early onset of senility. Not exactly a laugh a minute, then, but Polley, writing her own script as well, showed great sensitivity on a subject that affects so many but is so rarely tackled by the cinema.

Of course, the reputation for Canadian drama for being resolutely small scale and depressing didn't enjoy a fresh estimation, but the cast seized their chances to make this something more than the kind of story you might prefer to catch on television. After all, there's a proper film star in it in the shape of Christie, really shining in the role and perhaps that's the problem: it could not be avoided, but with her as the centre of attention, and still beautiful at the age she was, there's a danger of romanticising a tale of everyday tragedy.

And that wasn't a danger that Polley could abate on this evidence. Fiona starts the film aware of her condition, and she has to persuade the reluctant Grant that he couldn't take care of her at home on his own, so they have to place her in the local home for the elderly. Despite an air of restraint, Away from Her grows ever more sentimental and intent on jerking the tear ducts as Fiona and Grant finally grow apart after forty-four years of marriage, not because of relationship troubles, but because of disease.

The care home have a strange policy of not allowing anyone to visit the recently admitted for a whole thirty days, to let them settle in without too much distress, as if such a thing could be averted. And sure enough when the prickly Grant goes to see Fiona after that period, she doesn't recognise him (a fast acting movie version of Alzheimer's, obviously) and has latched onto one of her fellow residents (Michael Murphy), who is in a more advanced state of dementia than she is. As her spiral into incomprehension continues, Grant wonders if Fiona isn't somehow punishing him for his infidelities, and in a contrived development, he begins an affair with the wife (Olympia Dukakis) of Fiona's new friend. Away from Her is undeniably sincere, but doesn't get to the wrenching heart of senility, preferring a more glossy and indulgent sorrow. Music by Jonathan Goldsmith.

[Metrodome's Region 2 DVD has an audio commentary with Christie, deleted scenes and a trailer as extras.]
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 2936 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Who's the best?
Robin Askwith
Mark Wahlberg
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Darren Jones
Enoch Sneed
Andrew Pragasam
Keith Rockmael
Paul Shrimpton
Ian Phillips
Jensen Breck
   

 

Last Updated: