I had put off seeing this as there had been so much hype around it, that I felt it would not be able to live up to it all. I was happily proven wrong. This beautiful film is set in 1962, with the backdrop of the Cuban missile crisis and the first real societal awakening to the global threat of nuclear war. Whilst some people feel that man kind could be coming to an end, George (University Professor in California) played brilliantly by Colin Firth, has just lost his one true love in his boyfriend and can not see a reason to live.
His boyfriend Jim dies in a car accident whilst visiting his parents and they do not even tell him about it. He is denied from attending the service and has to cope with living when he feels dead inside, eking out enough emotional strength through memories to sustain day to day existence. He has a best friend, who like him is an ex pat Brit Julianne Moore. She was and clearly is still in love with him and finds her strength in gin and the forlorn hope of a love rekindled with George.
Some would call this lyrically paced, but I found it just moved along at the right speed to savour the whole thing. It is beautifully shot and stage, evoking the era in such a clear way that I got that it was the sixties immediately. There is so much attention to detail that you can tell it was a real labour of love. Tom Ford has made a film he can truly be proud of and we can be grateful to him. I often get miffed when straight actors play gay ones, when there are so many gay actors who never get a look in. However, acting is acting and if a good actor like Firth can do such an excellent job and thereby bring more attention to such a great work and story as this, then I have no problem.
This is a truly beautiful film, with style, humour and a study in human frailty through emotions and love that I found both moving and could really empathise with. Thoroughly recommend it.