An intense companion piece to Michael Hanecke’s Amour, death is ever present in Florian Zeller’s nuanced chamber piece.
Adapted from his own stage play with Christopher Hampton (A Dangerous Method, Carrington), Zeller (in his feature film debut as director) quietly and claustrophobically explores ageing and the breakdown of awareness and changing reality. Anthony Hopkins (The Two Popes, Thor) struggles to recognise his daughter, Anne (Olivia Colman – The Favourite, The Lobster) as she attempts to support his independent living in a rambling London apartment. But, presented from the father’s perspective, the fluidity of time and uncertain grasp of the immediate creates a sense of unease.
Whilst not always easy as Hopkins’ confusion increases, The Father is nevertheless an extraordinarily moving experience with its small cast creating a truly haunting and memorable exploration of dementia.
Nominated for 6 Oscars in 2021 including best film, supporting actress, won 2 for best actor and adapted screenplay.