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"Carol" and a Meditation on Longing

I saw "Carol" this past week. I kind of wish I could see it again, but it cost an absurd AMOUNT of money to see the first time around. Like, at what point in my life did seeing movies on a regular basis require a payment plan? God. I'll just wait until Redbox ... no, wait. My Chromebook doesn't have a CD drive. DAMMIT I HATE THE FUTURE.



Anyway. yes. "Carol," or "the Lesbian 'Brokeback Mountain'" as I have referred to it to some circles.

It was probably the most beautiful and well-done movie I've watched in recent memory. It was very poignant, very stark. It didn't seem to linger on niceties or unnecessary flourishes. It was thoughtful, but it was honest.

 
Both Cate Blanchett and Mara Rooney give award-deserving performances. I don't know if either of them will get anything, but their acting deserves some sort of accolades. They both play flawed, beautiful, real characters who are seeking something a little out of reach for 1950s America. God, I'm so glad I wasn't alive back then. Or in this incarnation back then. ~ Whatever you believe ~

The film follows its inspiration, Patricia Highsmith's "The Price of Salt." I read it this past November. I was sad and in a Tempe coffee shop, thinking about my lovelorn heart. I have changed since my Tinder-happy days; it has been very weird and slightly confusing for me. Whatever though - anyway, certain parts of the book struck me as incredibly ... slow. Dull. Not necessary to the core of the story. And I was so relieved to see that those parts didn't make it into Todd Haynes' final interpretation. Thank fucking god. Like, the part in the beginning where Therese visits Carol and she gives her milk? I'm sorry, that was just weird. (Milk weirds me out, IDK why. Except this almond milk I buy from Whole Foods. I'm all about that fucking almond milk.)

Another thing I was relieved was adjusted for 2015's take on closeted lesbians in 1950s America was the age difference. Mara Rooney's character is obviously somewhere in her twenties; Cate Blanchett can pass for 35 - 40, older if you consider it more. In the book, Therese is about 18, 19. Which at one point I would have been okay with, but while I was reading the book, I kept thinking, "She's just a baby!"

This all being said, the movie is a tragic, gorgeous vehicle. It reminded me of something that is so beautiful and fragile, you are afraid that with, one wrong move veering whatever way, it will break. Each look between Mara and Cate is dotted with longing, and when they finally admit to their love, it's such a relief. The release is much-needed, but the more physical aspects of the love affair are sparse besides one scene. And honestly, that was so refreshing. There are scenes where Carol squeezes Therese's shoulder, and you can see her knuckles lingering there. I doubt any film in the not-too-distant past has really captured longing so well.

The film ends on a surprisingly uplifting note. It's nice to watch a lesbian film where someone doesn't die, you know. Or end up married to a dude. The ending, I'd have to say, was probably one of my favorite conclusions in quite some time.

All this being said: gay or straight, go see "Carol." If you've ever longed for someone or something, you'll feel it.

96/100

Comments

  1. Gurl I wanna see this. Though I'm not sure I'm in the best place emotionally to see this kind of movie right now, plus it hasn't premiered at my local theater yet. *sigh* I love Rooney Mara, she should've won that Oscar for The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo! It sucks that she might be replaced in the sequel :(

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    Replies
    1. :( You okay bb? Also, I'm sorry it's not playing near you. I hope you see it when you feel better! And lastly, OMG! Why is she being replaced? SMH

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    2. Not really, no :/ But I'll be okay eventually, I guess. As for Carol, I'll just wait for the DVD so I can (illegally) download it in HD from The Pirate Bay bahaha. Ugh, I have no idea! It has been reported that Sony wants to replace her with some Swedish actress named Alicia Vikander, though Rooney herself said she's still signed to star in the sequel. Fingers crossed!

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    3. You and I both my sweet bb. I got hurt really bad not too long ago. And I'm still not sure what to do about it to be honest. Anyway, if you ever need to talk, I'm here and I can probably relate. Oh Swedish? I think that girl was in "The Danish Girl" if I remember correctly.

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    4. Ugh, sorry that happened to you. I think I'd like to talk, if it's cool I'ma hit you up on FB this week, thanks bb :) You can tell me what happened to you too if you want. I looked her up, she was in The Danish Girl indeed. She's cute, but she doesn't have Rooney's edge, that role was made for her.

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    5. It's all good. I just wish things made sense. Ha! Such is life. Please hit me up. And wasn't Mara in "Her?" She was great in that.

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