Top critical review
A serious film - in both good and bad senses
on 5 February 2016
It's slow and depressing. A fine performance from Christopher Plummer which lifts the film when he is on screen, but he dies at the beginning (the rest is flashback) and the real core of the film is Ewan McGregor and his two-alienated-people-colliding relationship with his enigmatic new partner which is mostly played out in silence, interspersed with gnomic utterances falling a little short of dialogue. A dog, speaking in sub-titles, is another key character. Overall, the film falls between several stools: the widowed father coming out as gay at the end of his life; the father's final illness and death and how his son lives with that and copes with it; the son's problem with intimate relationships; the girlfriend's ditto; the awkward relationship between the son and the boyfriend of his father who is about the same age as the son - each of these is left undeveloped and consequently uninteresting because the screenplays drops one thing and takes up another thing so that we never really get anywhere with anything. A worthy and serious film; but somewhat miserable and, unfortunately, dull.