What a beautiful film. How political - not mentioned in the above review other than in reference to the aunt. BUT so spoiled for me by the fact that I could not discern a word Allen was saying, and little that Henderson, that irksomely mannered actress, was saying. What about projection for this best screen actress around? Such a pity. Thus 4 star.
Time Out saysOne of the most impressive and multi-layered explorations of the international fault lines made terminally apparent by 9/11, Sally Potter’s new feature follows an intercultural love affair that struggles to define itself outside and beyond the weight of its historical and political implications. She (Allen, superb) is a North American-Irish woman living in London. He (Abkarian, equally compelling) is a Lebanese surgeon in exile, forced to work in a basement kitchen. As their relationship unfolds, Potter launches a head-on interrogation of various meeting points and divisions, between rationality and imagination, the West and ‘the other’, between consumerism and violence, and of course, between men and women... That this is all told in blank verse should put nobody off. This is political film-making firmly rooted in the passions and urgency of the body, with the title a strong indicator of the affirmative feelings at play. A major work by one of Britain’s most consistently intriguing, ambitious and fiercely independent film-makers.
Fri Aug 5, 2005