Review of “Carol”

From Facebook, 30 Dec 15:

Seeing “Carol” at a classic movie theater on Piedmont Avenue–

We saw a film today at a classic old movie theater, the kind on a street corner along a street lined with shops and cafes, where you walk out of the lobby afterwards right onto the street! This was the first time we’ve seen a movie in the Bay Area anywhere other than the AMC theaters in Emeryville, where you park in a large structure behind the theaters and adjacent shops.

The theater was charming but parking problematic: street parking was limited to 2 hours. I asked the ticket clerk about it, and he suggested parking on the side streets several blocks back, where the two-hour limit didn’t apply. It was raining today, so we got a space on the main street in front of the theater, fed the meter immediately before the film, then raced back to the car before the credits finished. (For the first time in likely 20 years, I did not sit through the credits, fearing a parking ticket.)

The film was Carol, starring Cate Blanchett and Rooney Mara, a lesbian romance set in the early 1950s, adapted from a novel by Patricia Highsmith (who also did the book that the film The Talented Mister Ripley was based on). It’s immaculately produced and subtly acted, with the plot considering the consequences in that era for anyone suspected of behavior that would trigger an “immorality clause”, that threatens the Blanchett character from losing contact with her child. This is not a film of histrionics, but the best scene is when Blanchett’s character, meeting her and her husband’s lawyers, defies their agreement that would brand her some kind of deviant, insisting that they are not ugly people, the kind of people who would drag their dispute through the courts at the expense of their child. It’s a dramatic scene in a film that is mostly about subtle nuances…including, most especially, the final scene.…/…/info

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