Thursday, 18 February 2016

POPCORN: Hemingway & Gellhorn

Before I start this post, I'd like to thank all of you who filled my readers survey last month. The results are in and, apparently, most of you prefer to get a movie recommendation from me—followed closely by the literature post, which will come up next month. But, since the original title might not fit some of the genres I'll be posting—let's face it: not all movies are great for dates—I decided to change the title but still essentially the same. Anyway, without further ado, here's this month's movie!

If you didn't know—or in case you hadn't noticed—I'm a romantic. That means I think about love around 99% of the time. However, it's not always the kind of love that you think, where there are flowers and chocolate, cuddling and pet names—although they may be nice too. I appreciate love in all its glory and downfall. In fact, stories of heartbreaks—and eventual moving on—relate to me the most. Hey, we can't appreciate the good things without knowing the struggle and hardship, right? This is one of those tales, where although love prevailed, it wasn't always shipshape. It is hard evidence that even when you care about someone dearly, it might not conquer all after all.

The film tells the love story between Ernest Hemingway, the famous American writer, and a famous war correspondent, Martha Gellhorn. If you're a follower of Hemingway, you might have heard of their affair—his greatest one, I hear. The storyline is told from the point-of-view of Gellhorn in her later years, as she accounted her life with Hemingway when she was younger. Their first meeting was quite ordinary but it clearly struck a chord in their memory. Nicole Kidman—playing Gellhorn—delivers superbly as usual, portraying her emotions in such a raw yet restrained way as a strong, independent woman would. Clive Owen's acting is not to be underestimated either, as he plays the short-tempered Hemingway wonderfully. The make up and costume design departments are also a cause for applause. They did well with dressing both Hemingway and Gellhorn, as well as transforming the distinct faces of the actors to age and portray the characters.

Upon watching this, please note that this is an HBO movie, which means there will most certainly be tasteful nudity. If you are uncomfortable with that, you could always look for the director's cut. I promise it won't affect the storyline greatly—although you might miss out on the great chemistry between the two actors. Also, this is not a documentary—although, in some parts, the cinematography is so well done you would almost believe it is—so most parts of it have been—shall we say—hollywood-ised, meaning made to be more glamorous than it should be. What I love most, however, about this story is the raw telling of love, where it's definitely not just flowers and cuddles. And sometimes people lose to their own ego.

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