* * * * 4-stars
Review By Greg Klymkiw
There’s much to be said for the dazzling cinematic potential of watching two great actors verbally slugging it out against the backdrop of claustrophobic domestic strife and Shelagh Carter’s Before Anything You Say does not disappoint in the long-honoured snipe-fest sweepstakes. Carter’s previous outing Passionflower, a harrowing portrait of mental illness, solidified her position as one of Canada’s leading practitioners of searingly glorious psychological melodrama and this new film manages to up the ante by delving into territory that blends the delectable properties of 70s “menopause movies” (typified by the likes of Gilbert Cates’s Summer Wishes, Winter Dreams) and the sorrow-laden relationship gymnastics of Alain Resnais (Hiroshima Mon Amour).
Isobel (Kristen Harris) and Jack (Darcy Fehr) find themselves at loggerheads during a vacation in Paris. Jack has an opportunity to move to Bangkok and take a job that will see him working towards fighting against human trafficking. This means that Isobel must either drop her own career and join him or stay behind in their glorious house in their beloved winter city. Add to this mix of emotions is his adult son’s disappearance.
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