An inquiry in criticism that comes up often for this writer is the idea that we review some films for what we want them to be and not for what they simply are. The wish that a character had acted differently or a plot point would be less muddled had it happened differently seems to miss the point of a director and/or writers point of view. Maybe it’s me. Some times I have to ask myself did I miss something?
45 YEARS had me grappling with this question for most of it’s run time. My major concern came from Charlotte Rampling’s character; I didn’t like her. Rampling is brilliant in the part, but her character sours the film. She seems less than understanding to her husband of 45 years who is going through a monumental life changing moment. The thought her husband couldn’t have any depth in his life before her is ridiculous. In many ways it is none of her business. Courtenay’s character seemed to have treated her well through their marriage and they both seemed to enjoy their life together. The wife’s reactions and actions struck me oddly and I fought it to the final shot.
Is this what the director wanted as a reaction? I’m not sure if he missed something or I did. It would have been different if maybe the writer and/or director did this or that. But then that would have been a different movie.