Sunday, April 18, 2010

Moofies - Beautiful Kate (2009)

EXPECTATIONS: I've heard nothing but great things about this film, and the cast is extremely strong, so I expect to be totally gushing about this film once it's over.

REALITY: This is ridiculously solid. Beautiful Kate tackles a storyline that I haven't really seen before in cinema, and certainly not portrayed in this manner. Without giving too much away, the subject is very much a taboo one, but I think it is represented in a realistic and caring manner. I didn't hate any of these characters for their actions, because they were all extremely well fleshed out, realistic characters that I was able to relate to and in some ways empathise with.

Rachel Ward directed this and wrote the screen play, based on the novel by Newton Thornburg that is going straight onto my "must check this book out" list. Ward shows restraint and smart choices throughout the film. It would be easy to make a film like this have big shock value, or for it to be extremely eroticised in some way, but I think Ward has treated the subject as just a part of a strong storyline with strong characters.

The performances are all amazing. Ben Mendelsohn is playing an older man now that he is one, and he's good at it; Rachel Griffiths is always easy to watch; Bryan Brown totally inhabits whatever character he is playing; and this is the second film I've seen Sophie Lowe in. I think Lowe will be around for a long time. All of the performances feel very natural and real.

The way the film uses flashback also feels very natural. The flashbacks are a vital part of the story and the points in which the story moves from the present to the past and back again all make sense and I think it much have been tough to pull this off without causing the viewer to feel jarred in any way.

I will gush no more. Just watch this film. It's fantastic.


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