Showing posts with label Phyllis Nagy. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Phyllis Nagy. Show all posts

Sunday, August 14, 2016


A couple of weeks ago, I watched Carol, a wonderful, slow-paced film that focuses on relationships and conversations.  I know people who hate this sort of movie, in which "hardly anything happens", but so long as they're done well, as Carol is by director, Todd Haynes, and the actors, I enjoy them. Haynes has no fear of pauses in action and dialogue that allow the presence and facial expressions of the actors to speak.  The slow pace of the film makes the brief scenes of violence all the more shocking.

The film is set in New York City in the early 1950s during the formative years of my late teens, a time I remember well.  Cate Blanchett wears 50s fashion chic beautifully, as though she owns them, and is a joy to watch. Blanchett and Rooney Mara perform beautifully as Carol Aird, a woman in her late 30s, married to a successful businessman, and Therese Belivet, a young woman in her early 20s, who works in a department store as she pursues her passion for photography.  The two women meet and fall in love.  Carol and her husband, Harge, have a young daughter, which greatly complicates the story set in a time when attitudes toward lesbian and gay relationships were nearly universally hostile. Couples of the same sex paid a terrible price for their love in those days.

Scenes in the movie are heartbreakingly sad, but rather than wanting to turn away, such is the excellence of entire production that I was drawn further and further into the lives of the characters.  For me, a suspension of disbelief is vital to my enjoyment of a movie, and Haynes and the actors succeeded far above and beyond meeting my standards. Altogether gripping for a film filled with silences, in which "hardly anything happens".  I will watch this one again.

The screenplay by Phyllis Nagy is taken from the novel, The Price of Salt (also known as Carol), by Patricia Highsmith.

Edit: I forgot to mention Carol's and and Therese's "Thelma and Louise" type road trip out west; the cinematography is stunning.