There have been many dementia dramas but few that attempt to put audiences in the POV of the person slipping away. THE FATHER is best seen with as little prior reading as possible, the tricky-clever ways the very building blocks of storytelling on film are used to befuddle the viewer as much as an increasingly confused Anthony (Anthony Hopkins) is what marks the film out along with its stellar performances. Music also plays an important part in writer-director Florian Zeller’s conveying of emotion in a mixed-up reality, key classical motifs are played diegetically as Anthony wanders his flat and then non-diegetically as his memories and perceptions become untethered. It’s Hopkins’ show, but Olivia Colman, Imogen Poots, Olivia Williams, Rufus Sewell and Mark Gatiss all make their parts vivid and memorable, lighthouses to guide or mislead Anthony lost in the storm of his mind. SSP
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Writer and film fanatic fond of black comedies, sci-fi, animation and films about dysfunctional families.
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