Tuesday, December 30, 2008

movie minute

Love letters: The lovely Kristin Scott Thomas has been turning in spectacular performances since she burst onto the scene as unfortunate-in-love Fiona in 1994's Four Weddings & A Funeral. And yet she remains one of the most underrated actresses who just happens to be British & French.

She hits another homerun in her latest film I've Loved You So Long in which she plays Juliette who is released from prison after 15 years and goes to live with her sister Lea (played by the radiant Elsa Zylberstein). The two sisters are estranged to say the least but Juliette and Lea are determined to make it work even as Lea's husband struggles with having Juliette in the house and spending time with the couple's two adopted daughters.

The film is cleverly directed by first-time director Phillippe Claudel and it's wonderfully layered not just in the performances but in the revelations that are slowly shared with us along the way.

This is an intelligent film that follows the two women and the difficulties they face in rebuilding a once seemingly unbreakable friendship and sisterhood. And although Thomas gives an absolutely beautiful performance (most of it devoid of makeup) the climax of the film is a bit implausible but the two actresses make it work somehow and give us hope that the two will forge a new bond that is even stronger than we thought it could be.

Bags of popcorn (out of 5): 3

Oscar nominations

Best Actress-Kristin Scott Thomas
Best Supporting Actress-Elsa Zylberstein

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