• James Rutherford

'Carol': An Exquisite and Absorbing Tale of Forbidden Passion in 1950's America


Movie poster for the film Carol starring Cate Blanchett and Rooney Mara

"Carol" (2015) is an elegant and engrossing drama starring Cate Blanchett as the titular Carol, a wealthy 1950s-era housewife who becomes smitten with a young department store clerk named Theresa (Rooney Mara), leading to a burgeoning friendship that evolves even-handedly into a touching romance between the two women. "Carol" is a somber, often melancholy film about yearning and desire that flows evenly across the screen, taking you under its spell and painting an unconventional love story in a time and place when such a relationship was so rarely recognized or approved. Director Todd Haynes (Far From Heaven, Wonderstruck) brings Patricia Highsmith’s novel to life with a deft hand, subtle and intricate with the emotions and desires of the two leads, patient in the unfolding passions at play, and perfectly even-handed in the overall exposition of the storyline as it leads through surprising and unforeseen turns. A polished and exquisite piece of filmmaking.

 

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