Rating: 7.9/10 ()
Director: Mike Leigh
Runtime: France: 129 min (Cannes Film Festival) | USA: 129 min
Release Date: 29 December 2010 (USA) See more »
A married couple who have managed to remain blissfully happy into their autumn years, are surrounded over the course of the four seasons of one average year by friends, colleagues, and family who all seem to suffer some degree of unhappiness.
Jim Broadbent - Tom
Lesley Manville - Mary
Ruth Sheen - Gerri
Oliver Maltman - Joe
Peter Wight - Ken
David Bradley - Ronnie
Martin Savage - Carl
Karina Fernandez - Katie
Michele Austin - Tanya
Philip Davis - Jack (as Phil Davis)
Imelda Staunton - Janet
Stuart McQuarrie - Tom's Colleague
Eileen Davies - Mourner
Mary Jo Randle - Mourner
Ben Roberts - Mourner
Sound Mix: Dolby Digital
Filming Locations: Derby, Derbyshire, England, UK
Mary: You can't go around with a big sign saying don't fall in love with me I'm married.
Tom: Well, most people wear a ring.
Mary: Well he didn't.
Well acted, but only partially successful , rated: 6/10
Mike Leigh, in my experience, always produces films for grown ups. Thoughtful, brave and interesting. His actors are also excellent. He has built his reputation on realism. The acting in this film was as good as ever. But I was left wondering why I felt so dissatisfied. I reflected and concluded that the film is very sentimental in its portrayal of marriage. The married couple here are, apparently, blissfully happy. They clearly share interests, so far so good. But there were several points in the film where it seemed to me that there bliss was founded on neither of them actually challenging the other's opinions or behaviour. Is this really what Leigh intends us to see as the recipe for a happy marriage? The moment there is the whiff of conflict, shutting up? The issue of their son was also hinted at but never explored. Even more curiously this happily married couple appear to socialise solely with singleton social mis-fits. The single people in this film are unremittingly portrayed as lonely, drunk, sad, incompetent or aggressive. How realistic is this? It seemed that we were being treated to a piece of propaganda in favour of marriage. Finally, what happened to the opening character, played by Imelda Staunton? Either this section was irrelevant and should have been cut, or it had a relevance and was left hanging. Untidy and lacking in form.