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77 of 81 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars .....Just Beautiful
'A Single Man' is a film based upon the 1964 Christopher Isherwood novella of the same name. Set during the height of the Cuban missle crisis, it depicts a day in the life of gay college professor George Falconer (Colin Firth). Falconer is still coming to terms with the untimely death of lover Jim (Matthew Goode). His soul & mind are tormented with desires of his own...
Published on 9 July 2010 by Mr. H Chinaski

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A bit self indulgent
After all the hype I was expecting a bit more than I got. It looks great, the people in it look great, you cannot fault it on style and aesthetics. But the story was a little bit light in my view, and the pace was too slow. I'd recommend watching it, but I doubt I will watch it twice.
Published 20 months ago by Smurfette


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77 of 81 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars .....Just Beautiful, 9 July 2010
'A Single Man' is a film based upon the 1964 Christopher Isherwood novella of the same name. Set during the height of the Cuban missle crisis, it depicts a day in the life of gay college professor George Falconer (Colin Firth). Falconer is still coming to terms with the untimely death of lover Jim (Matthew Goode). His soul & mind are tormented with desires of his own death and an undying fear of the outside world. Falconer cuts a desolute figure and he fails to see any point to his life beyond mere exsistence. He seems to shut everyone out through fear of commitment & friendship, shunning his neighbouring family at every oppurtunity (although in the most polite fashion possible), distancing himself from his students with talk of fear & self-hatred and forcing arguaments with long time companion Charley (the ever-excellent Julianne Moore). Into this life of solitude enters enthusiastic student Kenny Potter (Nicholas Hoult) who little-by-little begins to break away at the mental wall Falconer has set around himself and give him some meaning to his life. Thus plays out one of the most beautiful and stately films to have come out of Hollywood in decades.

Director Tom Ford deserves much praise for his adaptation. As a first time director (his day job is in fashion) who had to finance the film himself, he shows a mixture of patience and flair that will take him far in the world of film. The way the film slowly unravels its intentions without giving anything away too early (at one point I thougth Charley would turn out to be some kind of high-class working girl!!!) is beautifully rendered. The (SPOILER ALERT) 'attempted suicide' scene is both painstakingly hilarious and devastatingly heartbreaking, a mix that is not easy to pull off and the way the ending engulfs you in greif is wonderfully paced and shot. Another mention must go to the music department. Throughout the film the music is breathtaking without ever over whelming the scene, it is a joy to listen to as the end credits roll. Also, the set department (who if I'm not mistaken, work on television series 'Mad Men') do a great job of portraying the early 60's vibe.

This film is just beautiful to watch and with standout performances for Firth, Hoult and Moore it deserves all the awards it has currently received. If you are looking for an adult film deep with intellect and meaning, then I would highly recommend.
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54 of 60 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Perfect acting, a beautiful and unforgettable movie., 9 Feb 2010
By 
M. H. Costeris (Utrecht, the Netherlands) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
A movie based on the novel by Christopher Isherwood. Colin Firth plays a man who has lost his lover and finds himself unable to go on. He plans to end his life and we follow him through what should be his last day, during which he rediscovers some of the things that could make life worth living again, but it might still be to late for him.

Much has been made of the fact that the movie looks beautiful and it does, but more than anything else it's the acting that really lifts the movie towards perfection. Colin Firth shows a side I had not appreciated in him before, projecting tremendously understated but heartbreaking emotion both in the way he delivers his lines and his non-verbal acting. Perhaps with the gravity of the subject there was a risk that this would lurch towards melodrama but that absolutely never happens. In fact quite often the movie is funny as well as profoundly moving.

Visually the movie is perfect but I was struck by the quality of the sound effects as well. The way certain emotions and characters don't just project their own effect on the visual world of the movie but also carry their own sound theme throughout the movie opened the door to the main characters experience of the world in a way I had not expected.

Beautiful and unforgettable. A perfect debut.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Bravura Performance from Mr Firth, 25 April 2011
By 
Tommy Dooley "Tom" (London, England) - See all my reviews
(TOP 100 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: A Single Man [DVD] (DVD)
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.
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41 of 46 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars When you feel you have nothing left to live for, 20 Feb 2010
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Based on the novel by Christopher Isherwood, the film follows one day in the life of George Falconer, a gay British University lecturer living in California. His male partner has died recently in a car accident and George is left understandably devastated. His partner's family deny him his right to attend the funeral and so grieve for his partner properly. Instead we find him in a state of limbo - trying to continue with the demands of daily life while finding life without his partner impossible. The film is set in 1962 and the Cuban missile crisis being at its height provides a suitable backdrop for someone contemplating if there is any point in carrying on.

It sounds like this would make for depressing viewing but somehow it doesn't. George is brilliantly portrayed by Colin Firth in a role completely different to the rom-coms he is so often associated with. For me, he was utterly convincing and really manages to convey this character in an understated yet sympathetic way. There are also flashes of real humour throughout. Julianne Moore plays his gin-soaked, ex-pat best friend, who seems to have been based on Ab Fab's Patsy. I usually love Julianne Moore but I found her self-indulgent character a little difficult to reconcile with the rest of the film. I haven't read the book though so maybe this is exactly how she is portrayed.

The film is directed by Tom Ford, the ex-Creative Director of Gucci, and is, as you would expect, a real visual treat. Painstaking care and attention has been lavished on ensuring the era is perfectly captured and I felt I had been transported back to the sixties. Apparently the design team that was used for the film was the same one that worked on the TV series Mad Men, which is set in the same era. One of the aspects of the direction that stood out for me when watching the film was Ford's use of colour. With the washed out grey and brown tones throughout much of the film, we are very much able to glimpse the world through George's eyes, which makes the rarer flashes of colour all the more poignant.

In parts it reminded me a little of The Hours, another great film about love, life and loss.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A bit self indulgent, 21 April 2013
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This review is from: A Single Man [DVD] (DVD)
After all the hype I was expecting a bit more than I got. It looks great, the people in it look great, you cannot fault it on style and aesthetics. But the story was a little bit light in my view, and the pace was too slow. I'd recommend watching it, but I doubt I will watch it twice.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Work Of Art, 19 Oct 2012
This review is from: A Single Man [DVD] (DVD)
When I finished Isherwood's novel part of me was nervous, the film cannot live up to the beauty and the orginiality of Isherwood's words. It did.
This is not a film, it's a work of art. Each character is captured in Isherwood's light, given an artistic colour and brought to life from the words.
The tones of the images on the screen provides a depth and a rarity so often ignored in modern film.

Truely my favourtie film paired with my favourite book.
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16 of 19 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Single Man, 1 Oct 2010
By 
Spider Monkey (UK) - See all my reviews
(HALL OF FAME REVIEWER)    (TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: A Single Man [Blu-ray] (Blu-ray)
`A Single Man' is the excellent directional debut from Tom Ford and this offers up an artistic and visual treat. This is set in the sixties and follows a gay school teacher as he struggles to come to terms with the death of his long time partner. He works his way through one last day before he contemplates his suicide so he can be with his lover again. His deep sadness is potent throughout and yet as he goes through his day various small events give him a sense of life's wonder and promise. This has some wonderfully framed scenes and the use of colours and camera angles make this a very polished affair. Firth is exceptional in this and the relationship with his friend Charley (played by Julianne Moore) makes for some funny and heart warming scenes. The use of music in this film really adds to the beauty of the direction and together they create a stunning film. This is relatively short at just over 90 minutes but it is very well crafted and has the prefect tempo for the story being told. Firth deserves every accolade he received for this film and if Ford continues making films like this then he will rapidly become a director of distinction and one worth keeping an eye out for in future. All in all this is a moving and visually stunning film.

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Two Words: Tom Ford, 8 May 2014
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This review is from: A Single Man [DVD] (DVD)
When I first read that Coliin Firth and Matthew Goode were gonna star in this movie AND Tom Ford, top designer, direct, I immediately bought the book and read it in one go. Amazing.

The movie has absolutely NO flaws! The cinematography is outstanding - it is obvious that the man behind the camera is well versed with texture and colors: All scenes have a sort of velvety feel to them - incredible.

And you can tell that a top men's wear designer was behind wardrobe.

The only thing that annoys me and it annoys me a lot: The movie is about Colin Firth's character dealing with his male partner's passing and even though Julianne Moore's character comforts him hers is a minor role, but still her face (beautiful, admittedly) graces both the DVD and CD covers ... and no major photos of Matthew Goode.

I wonder whether this out of proportion feature of Julianne Moore's character is due to the fact that "you cannot have two male lovers on a cover" and/or in order to sell tickets/DVDs you need a man and a woman on the cover ... Well, that IS my only complaint, so preach.

And please buy the CD too - the score is fantastic.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars a perfect - surprisingly perfect - adaption, 26 Sep 2013
By 
Dr. Vernon M. Hewitt (Bristol, UK.) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (REAL NAME)   
This review is from: A Single Man [DVD] (DVD)
I watched the film adaption of A Single Man last night on the box and ordered it immediately. It was a special book to me, probably Ishwerwood's best. I am no particular fan of Colin Firth, but his depiction of George was disturbingly accurate: he portrayed perfectly the sense of double exile in 1960s America: an ex pat Brit and a homosexual. The film is pleasantly observed, beautifully made, and for once existentially true to the book although there were some notable changes in dialogue and character. I first read this in 1986 - ironically the year Isherwood died - and of course in my vanity I associated myself with Kenny (who is well casted by the British actor from Skins). Now of course I realize I am George, in fact I AM George, and the bitter sweat entropy he feels is painted out on the screen with care. Afterwards I re-read the book: it does make me wonder whether now, in an era of sexual acceptance and openness, this sort of novel could be written. Isherwood would have rejected the idea of a gay novel, (he tried to embrace the idea of the American novel late in his life) but the secrecy implicit to George's life is was makes the book (and the film) so subversive and well observed. Now all is open and revealed and what gave Isherwood's work its peculiar grace, could not be written.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Already a Classic, 24 Jun 2013
This review is from: A Single Man [DVD] (DVD)
Brilliant acting, beautifully made into film, wonderful music (get the soundtrack here A Single Man (Soundtrack) and a gripping script. In one word: a masterpiece.
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A Single Man [DVD]
A Single Man [DVD] by Tom Ford (DVD - 2010)
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