Genre: Drama, Comedy, Romance
Rating: Rated PG – 13 for a scene of sexuality and brief strong language
Irish accents have an effect on me, I have to say. Before we go any further, you have to know that this film already had me tingling with excitement at the expectation of potatoes and all kinds of irish-ness overflowing from every scene. So unfortunately I must inform you, it had one of my boxes ticked from the opening credits.
The second thing to know about this film is that it has been nominated for the Academy Award for Best picture as well as for Best Performance by a Lead Actress, so it is considered to be a great film led by a talented actress who continues to fly under the radar despite this being her second Oscar nom. This, you will be glad to hear, proves to be true. Saiorse Ronan has great ability, and pulls of her character’s hard shell but incredibly innocent and loving heart magnificently, but more of that later.
The film is about an Irish girl in a small Irish town, who leaves home in search of a bright future in New York. Her struggle to settle down and acclimate to the ways of America, a deep longing for home, her sister and mother left behind are the difficulties she faces. Not to mention an overbearing, deeply Christian landlord and a gaggle of giddy young ladies. This movie gives us her life’s journey and her path to love, which is an based on the novel of the same title by Colm Toibin.
The movie is directed by John Crowley, who has only directed movies in this century, and not too many of them at that. He takes a relaxed, slow pace to the movie which makes the story seem longer than it really is, and gives the impression that the director wants the audience to have every single detail of this 1950s-set tale.
Saiorse Ronan does very well to hold your attention through the numerous slow, camera close ups, along with the rest of the cast, slowing down time itself as they attempt to communicate the emotion their characters go through. They all do a superb job. The movie deserves the recognition it gets, and I enjoyed it. However it did not blow my mind.
The reason lies in why it did not win the Academy awards it was nominated for. The picture is beautiful, that is not up for debate. So was Spotlight, which presented a thought provoking, exciting tale. So did Brie Larsson’s character in the movie Room. This means the movie has a staleness to it, and lacks surprises. This is was what made it the nominee and not the winner. It is still worth watching though.
This article was written by Maithya Kioko.