Secrets & Lies (rewatch)
Posted by martinteller on July 2, 2012
Even better the second time. I truly love a good cry with a movie, and Leigh delivers the tears and then some. I don’t have anything to add to my previous review, really. I still think the Ron Cook scene is the one thing (indeed the ONLY thing) that doesn’t quite work for me. I don’t even dislike the scene, I just find it unnecessary. You could say it establishes another family “secret” and gives Spall something to regret or feel ashamed about, but it doesn’t really accomplish that. It just feels like a distraction from the familial relations we care about exploring.
It’s inconsequential, though, just something to pick nits over. The rest of it is outstanding. Works even better on a revisit, when the Blethyn character is sympathetic right from the start. I hate to single out any cast member because they’re all astounding, even the smallest roles (well, except maybe Ron Cook). But Blethyn is so heartbreaking, so compelling, so vulnerable. The way she says “darling” and “sweetheart” is just about the most endearing thing I’ve ever heard. And her scenes with Marianne Jean-Baptiste are so deeply affecting. One rarely gets to feel such intense warmth and affection for characters, I could watch those two chat all day long.
But now I really am just repeating my old review. I just wanted to be sure this film still held up, and still moved me so wonderfully. It certainly does. Rating: Masterpiece