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The Long Day Closes

Posted by martinteller on January 14, 2011

This film has much in common with its predecessor, Distant Voices, Still Lives. A bittersweet collection of brief nostalgic episodes, with heaps of songs… as before, both diegetic and non-diegetic. Again, the memories are both good and bad, emphasizing the small comforts and minor torments of life. In this case, the painful events are not in the form of an abusive father (in fact, Bud’s father is entirely absent and I don’t think he’s even mentioned) but come from bullies, school humiliations, and religious fears. Although many of the joys come from the same kind of wondrous family moments as in the previous film, there’s a fair share of little private moments and more important, escapes to the movies. Bud is often seen going to (or desiring to go to) the cinema, and audio clips from The Magnificent Ambersons and Meet Me in St. Louis, among others, are played over various events. And once again, Davies plays with chronology, although not in a jumping-back-and-forth manner. Instead, time seems to flow like a river, eroding gaps between memories as one flows seamlessly into the next. It’s a beautiful film, both haunting and warm, and one that shows a growth in Davies’ abilities as filmmaker, especially with so many incredibly striking compositions. I also want to praise Tina Malone and Jimmy Wilde, who provide some terrific comic relief. And I love that Davies has enough faith in his audience to present a racist incident without telling you how to feel about it in any way. Rating: 9

IMDb
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One Response to “The Long Day Closes”

  1. […] 120. The Long Day Closes (1992, Terence Davies) […]

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