EIFF15 Review: 45 Years (2015)

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A long-standing relationship is put under severe pressure by past revelations in 45 Years, writer-director Andrew Haigh’s tragic, yet masterful follow-up to the acclaimed Weekend. Days before their forty fifth wedding anniversary celebrations are due to take place, Geoff (Tom Courteney) receives an unexpected letter that drags up suppressed feelings, leaving Kate (Charlotte Rampling) out in the cold as feelings of envy and exile steadily consume her. Performed with supreme skill by Rampling and Courteney, the former of which able to reveal extensive inner depth with one momentary look or action, 45 Years is a contained crisis simmering with unspoken hurt, anger and resentment. Haigh’s script – based on a short story by David Constantine – is beautifully written, the narrative playing out over the days leading up to the celebrations as a palpable sense of unease builds and the crevice between Geoff and Kate widens. Flavoured with stunning cinematography and subtle camera work that adds to the authenticity, 45 Years is tremendous, equal parts achingly beautiful and devastatingly sad.

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