Age of Adeline – movie review
It has been a terribly long time since I posted. I apologize. There have been many reasons. I had password issues that meant I was unable to log onto the blog for a couple of months. I have been travelling (as Kevin has already mentioned). I have been busy living in Japan and so have consumed little media (certainly little worth comment) and I have been a little lazy. Well, I am back and while I do not make promises to be regular I will certainly try to do better.
The first thing I would like to review is a movie. It is not a new movie. In fact I watched it in August while on a 14 hour flight from Japan to Tokyo.
I knew practically nothing about The Age of Adeline when I selected from the limited pool of available movies. Whatever I might have thought it would be about (something through time based on the costume clips), it wasn’t. It was however, surprisingly good. A movie that I really enjoyed enough that I have actually watched it again.
The Age of Adeline was released in April 2015 to moderate reviews – apparently. I was just looking this up on the internet. Sometimes it is best to go into a film with as little information as possible. It certainly worked to my advantage for this one. The movie tells the story of Adeline, born January 1, 1908. Through an accident and science-magic she stops appearing to age when she is 29 years old. The story is mostly told from the present day with a few flashbacks to various points in her life. It is a romance in the classic, predictable way of romances. However, knowing how it is going to end does not spoil the journey, at least for me.
What I liked about this Sleeping Beauty-esq tale was the voice of the film. Not literally the man who did the voice-over exposition at the start and end of the movie, although I liked that choice. It was the feel. I liked the costumes, the cinematography, the way the characters conversed, and the flow of the story. I suppose I liked the clean, simple tale of life that had nothing to do with massive explosions, overly dramatic moments or superheroes. Perhaps it was the change that appealed most to me as other people didn’t seem to enjoy the film as much as I did.
I thought the story of Adeline Bowman to be interesting. It may not have touched on her past as much as I would have liked, but I think it hit all the key moments. I also enjoyed those small moments that connected past and present. For example when she is attending a New Year’s Eve party at a fancy hotel and looking at photos on the wall, which include her with a different group of people some fifty or sixty years earlier. She was a classy character and I found Blake Lively’s soft-spoken performance compelling. I liked the costume choices and the touch of old that even the modern Adeline incorporated into her wardrobe. Visually, the film was appealing.
The rest of the cast was also engaging. Adeline’s daughter was the most interesting relationship and unfortunately the weakest. It would have been interesting to explore more of the hardships of watching your child age as you do not. Though they did try to do some interesting things between the characters, it was not the greatest strength of the film. After all this was a romance. As such it focused mostly on the present day love interest of Ellis Jones and the older love interest of William Jones.
Yes, those two are related as father and son – one of the more … awkward moments. Though no one seems to really make much of a deal that William had been ready to propose to Adeline long before he married Ellis’ mother. I recognize the use of this sort of relationship (father and son both falling in love with the same ageless woman) was done in order to move the plot forward. It was used to force Adeline to face her own life and choices. Still I thought it a bit much that Adeline’s Prince Charming was the son of the man who wanted to marry her some 45-ish years earlier. I suppose it did add for an interesting exploration of William’s character and whether he was still happy with his choices after so much time had passed.
The Age of Adeline was a nice story. I really enjoyed watching and would recommend it as a good, sweet romance.