Friday, March 01, 2013

Film Review - Never Let Me Go (2010)

Oh it's another film review of a reasonably old film!  I'm wondering if I should re-consider my no plot spoilers or description rule...but no, I do like to see a film where I don't have any preconceptions, so I shan't spoil anything for you. Having said that the problem here of course is that this is one of my favourite books. So you know what I'm going to say.  

I thought perhaps if you hadn't read it you might think it was ok, and I was pretty happy with the casting of Keira Knightly as one of the central characters because she plays Ruth, the repulsive one. But D didn't think it was that good either, and had a lot of questions about bits of the plot that were unexplained.

Kazuo Ishiguro's book is however, very very good.  What the film lacked was the feeling of looming, confusing tragedy. Because of the time constraints it really had to cram in the Hailsham days, which I think in the book is a really wonderful evocation of how normality is whatever you experience as a child. The film did attempt to put all the important bits in, but it felt a little bit like a montage and failed to build an atmosphere. To little time spent here, and to much spent as an adult. 

Carey Mulligan put in a great performance, and Izzy Meikle-Small was a real find as the child Kathy. I felt that Andrew Garfield was mis-cast as Tommy, and it jarred the whole way through.  

Having said all that, the scene where Kathy and Tommy are trying to justify addition to the Gallery as adults is so well done.  Absolutely perfect.

In short, read the book and don't bother with the film.