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Old May 19th, 2017, 01:37 PM
ashdoc ashdoc is offline
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Ashdoc's movie review---The sense of an ending

'The sense of an ending' could have well been titled 'Making sense of an ending' , for at the end of the movie we are left confused as to who was dating whom and who was fathering whom in the past . The director ( or rather the novelist who wrote the book on which the movie is based ) has deliberately left the events that unfolded in the past somewhat vague , so that endless discussions are made on movie portals and drawing rooms about what exactly had happened in the fateful past . This seems to be the new trend of publicising movies ; 'Inception' movie greatly benefited from the endless discussions on it's vague ending , and this movie may too benefit from the curiosity generated by the discussions .

So on to the story . A grumpy old man ( Jim Broadbent playing Anthony 'Tony' Webster ) leads an ordinary existence in Britain . He owns a small antique camera shop . He is not exactly polite to his customers , is impolite to the mailman , and has been divorced from his wife because of his unpleasant nature---as he himself admits at the end of the film to her . But lately his life has acquired a humdrum nature as he has gotten used to meeting his ex wife and daughter in between while ruminating over past memories of his life---some of those memories being notoriously selective as the events that unfold in the movie prove . The one thing that he can look forward to is the upcoming birth of his grandson , as his daughter is heavily pregnant .

To interrupt in between from an Indian point of view (as in my country India families are close knit ) , the standard of living of these people in the west is of course high quality but marked by loneliness . The three ( Tony , his wife , his daughter ) live alone in different houses . Yes , even the daughter lives alone without the man who fathered her son even though she is relatively younger , and it is Tony who goes with her to her pregnancy classes rather than her partner . The other thing I noticed was the difference between the past memories ( when native Britons predominated in the population ) and the present ( where society is multiracial , and the pregnancy class has even lesbians ) .

Coming back to the story , the humdrum existence of the lead character is interrupted rather rudely by a letter that he has inherited a sum of money from his ex girlfriend'a mother . Along with that he has also inherited a diary which presumably contains some secrets , but when he tries to lay hands on that diary he cannot get it . Intrigued as to what were the contents of the diary , Tony contacts and meets his ex girlfriend Veronica ( played by Charlotte Rampling ) and when he cannot get her to divulge anything he starts to literally stalk her . During all this the unopened corner of his memories gets opened , and we get to see the flood of past events unfold before us on screen . They are shown to us as flashbacks and give a relaxed feel and languid pace to the film , tinged with nostalgia for what happened and what did not happen and what should have been....

A saga of suspense ran through the film very slowly , taking it's time to unravel secrets at low speed . And that was the way I liked it , for it was getting very cozy in the theatre as I sat pondering the mysteries of life in my cushioned seat as the film never rushed the flow of events even though the director had the chance to make things happen fast and finish it off quickly . And as Tony was handed a letter that he had written and had sparked off a chain of events that led to tragedy , he was being forced to rethink the fundamentals of his own existence . That he turned out into a better and more responsible man at the end of the film is what makes for a positive ending .

Acting by all is good , even by the actors who play the young Tony and Veronica ( Bill Howle and Freya Mavor ) . Background music is decent and colours and photography are okay too . The film is for those who like off beat films without the thrills of high octane entertainment that mainstream cinema provides . Made on a presumably low budget , the film has no special effects or fancy locations . It rather depends on it's story , direction and acting skills of it's actors .

Verdict---decent .

Three stars .

Last edited by ashdoc; May 19th, 2017 at 01:57 PM.
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