Alain Resnais 2013 , France
Alain Resnais’ (Last Year at Marienbad, Hiroshima mon amour) final film before his death in March 2014 is a moving, graceful, and surprisingly affirmative farewell to life from a truly great artist.
In the midst of rehearsals for a new play, amateur dramatics proponents Colin and Kathryn receive the shattering news that their friend George is fatally ill and only has a few months to live. Life begins to come apart at the seams – not just for Kathryn, who was once George’s partner, but also for her friends Tamara and Monica. The full force of the emotional turmoil they experienced in their youth and their long-buried dreams are rekindled. Much to the chagrin of their respectable, middle-class husbands, the women begin to argue about which of them should be allowed to accompany George on a final journey …
After Smoking/No Smoking  and Private Fears in Public Places , this is the late Alain Resnais’s third adaptation of a work by British playwright Alan Ayckbourn and the great master’s last film. By confining the action to an artificial, almost entirely studio-bound world, he succeeds in creating a tragicomic theatre of vanities. Employing the ironic distance of a sage observer of human nature, Resnais ponders the power of love and desire and in doing so enables his characters, driven by their longings, hopes and obsessions, to leave the beaten track for once.
"Artfully exposing cinema's debt to theatricality, Alain Resnais's impeccably designed take on Alan Ayckbourn's stage study of the secrets and half-truths destabilising a Yorkshire amdram company affords a final opportunity to see a master at work. A mischievously melancholic delight. ****" - David Parkinson, Empire
"charming, delicately performed and unexpectedly poignant ****" - Allan Hunter, Daily Express
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