My New Year’s resolution for the last few years has been to watch more movies. Resolutions are meant to be difficult, and take some effort to achieve, and this year has been the first year that I could confidently say I’ll do this without much effort, so I needed a new movie-related resolution for 2016. This year I’m resolving to move out of my comfort zone, and be more open to movies I’d never normally watch. And that’s how I found myself watching Carol.
Carol (2015) is the story of an unexpected love affair between Therese (Rooney Mara), a young woman working at a department store, dreaming of a career in photography, and Carol (Cate Blanchett), an older woman stuck in a loveless marriage and a difficult custody situation over her daughter.
Is this a period drama? I’ve just realised I’ve never actually understood the term. How many years ago does a movie need to be set before it’s classed that way? I’m going to learn something new today, that’s for sure. Anyway, that’s something I wanted to say. How the sets in Carol were beautiful. The department store in particular reminded me of the one in Brooklyn (the movie, not the place, although it was set there...you know what I mean) which put me at ease instantly. The costumes as well, were so well done and I found myself missing dialogue at some points because I was marvelling at everything else.
This isn’t my kind of movie at all. I struggle with romance movies without the comedy element, and of course with the nature of the romance in Carol, there’s no leading man. So I was baffled when I found myself completely sucked into this story. I loved following Therese’s story, wondering whether she would leave her quiet life and love interest Richard (Jake Lacy) behind for a life with Carol. Equally, my heart sank when Carol’s husband Harge (Kyle Chandler) opened up a custody case for their daughter.
It even took a much darker turn and a twist I wasn’t expecting. It’s all thanks to the amazing job that Rooney Mara and Cate Blanchett have done, and it’s a shame this year’s awards season looks so strong, as I’d love to see them both win for their work here.
Something else I wanted to highlight in this movie is something I don’t normally notice, the music. It really stood out in Carol, and in 2 key moments. One I don’t want to mention because spoilers, but it burst out again at the ending, and it was so powerful it kind of gave me goosebumps!
So all in all, my New Year’s resolution is going well, and I’m really glad I gave Carol a chance. I don’t think I’m a fully converted fan of the genre yet, but I’ll certainly give more movies like this a chance.