Director: TOM FORD

100 minutes| U.S.A.| 2009| Colour| Anamorphic| ?Dolby Stereo

This film was released 12th February 2010, and is no longer screening.

The finest performance of Colin Firth’s career illuminates this affecting adaptation of Christopher Isherwood’s early ’60s novel about an English professor adrift in Los Angeles after the loss of his long-time male companion. The name of writer-director Tom Ford, perhaps new to cineastes, will be familiar to dedicated followers of haute couture. He makes an impressive transition from catwalk to silver screen with this story about a man determined to maintain a fastidiously elegant appearance while underneath his heart is in tatters. Although Ford’s eye for the era’s Southern California cool-school design cossets Firth’s personal crisis amid a milieu of truly swoonsome allure, the performers remain the centre of attention. Julianne Moore’s boozy confidante offers a touching vignette of self-deception, but it’s Firth’s uncanny rendering of George Falconer’s sardonic wit and quintessential English reserve as he wonders how to persevere in a world without love which makes this chic, sincere film compellingly truthful as well. Notes by Trevor Johnston

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