Challenging story to watch, even more so was to film. Revolving around a single character, depicted very convincingly by Emma Thompson, film discusses the nature of dying, trying to grasp death itself. Carefully constructed, avoiding cheap sentimentality, and toned with a dose of intelligent black humor, it seems both subversive and academic at the same time.
Pseudo-intellectual film that has Thompson musing obvious sentiments or extremely abstract statements about her cancerous condition directly to the camera. Touching at times in its scenes of traditional drama but mostly flounders as it doesn't tell us anything we don't already know or assume with this amateurish style. Breaking The 4th Wall-narration sometimes works in comedies, but not dramas when it lacks purpose.
Astonishing partnership between Nichols and Emma. Her great, full of energy monologues are so pretty well-written by them (and Margaret Edson), that they got to turn a simple and melancholic story into a Proustian journey through solitude. The film finished ten hours ago and I'm still crying - not because its sadness, but because its pure humanity.
Emma Thompson gives an intelligent, luminous and brave performance here in the adaptation of Margaret Edson's play. Nichols does a good job of opening up the play to cinematic boundaries by surronding Thompson with a strong supporting cast. The use of the Gorecki music really adds to the pathos of the film without becoming a maudlin affair. Many wonderful scenes especially "The Runaway Bunny". A real treat.
There is something inherently daring about an actor taking on the role of a cancer patient, although I am unsure what this element is specifically. Emma Thompson's incredible portrayal here was moving beyond words and reduced me to tears nearing the end of the film. This is likely Mike Nichols' most poignant film, and done in a very minimal style that lends to the sparse nature of hospitals. A wonderful picture.