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"Carpe diem" - life lived to the full until ...,
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This review is from: Hilary and Jackie [DVD] (1998) (DVD)
SAFE READING - NO SPOILERS
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Many audiences and television viewers remember Jacqueline du Pre as the smiling, vivacious and beautiful lady with the flowing blonde hair and the cello firmly held between her legs completely lost in her music, eyes staring, unseeing, into the middle distance. A prodigious talent from her earliest years capable of stunning, note-perfect and evocative performances, apparently without too many hours of practice, she took the music world by storm, making many of the famous cello pieces her own and her performances touchstones for others to follow, often with her husband, Daniel Barenboim, another child prodigy.
This behind-the-scenes film sketches in a fuller picture, some of which is supported by biographical information but not necessarily in the way it is depicted, to create another life and not one necessarily wanted by lovers of her music.
To see an ordinary individual overwhelmed by multiple-sclerosis (MS) is heart-rending and moving enough but to witness such a world-renowned and respected talent succumb to MS and see the certainty of movement reduced to uncontrolled shudders and the purity of sound into discordant scrapes, is enough to reduce the toughest viewers to tears. Great credit to the team film-makers and actors.
A quality film worth watching but be prepared to be swept along in a maelstrom of your deepest emotions as it takes you into the highs and lows of a memorable life but one which highlights the uncertain and fragile nature of human existence. "Carpe diem".
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Initial post: 23 May 2012 04:29:35 BDT
Last edited by the author on 23 May 2012 04:31:20 BDT
We agree right up to your final and appropriately smaller paragraph: "A quality film worth watching but be prepared to be swept along in a maelstrom of your deepest emotions as it takes you into the highs and lows of a memorable life but one which highlights the uncertain and fragile nature of human existence. "Carpe diem"." I don't know why, but as much as i love Emily Watson (why they did not choose a blond resembling her, as Hilary and Jackie looked very much alike, i cannot begin to fathom), and as much as i WAS expecting to be swept up in the great tragedy--as most certainly it was--i was left unmoved by the film. I do not even know if i would call it a "quality film". I love your words for what it might have been but, for me, is not. The scenario, bifurcated as it is, prevents all fluidity and creates an artificiality which itself prohibits, in my opinion, emotional depth. It should have been as you describe, but fails in its most basic premises and even more so in your expressed worthier ones. Sorry if i disappoint you, but i was so disappointed myself. So little is given of their lives as to make it almost a caricature of a tragedy rather than the genuine article.
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