Last night I saw Amour, starring Emmanuelle Riva and Jean-Louis Trintignant.
If this wasn't a Best Picture nominee, I would never have made it through the whole film.
Georges (Trintignant) and Anne (Riva) are a happy old couple. Their adult daughter has made a life of her own abroad and they seem content in their retirement.
One morning during breakfast, Anne zones out. Not for a moment, not for a second, but for a terrifying few minutes while her husband scrambles to decide what to do next. Anne has suffered a stroke and soon she will be paralyzed on one side of her body.
In a matter of days, this vibrant couple who still attended concerts and playfully flirted with one another will become a frustrated, pained duo who survives only for the other's benefit.
Emmanuelle Riva, who is still stunning in her mid 80s, is shown deteriorating piece by piece, while every last morsel of her dignity is stripped from her being. Jean-Louis Trintignant as Georges wears each heartbreaking revelation in his expressions, as he witnesses the love of his life leaving.
There is no greater devastation, and none of us want to think of our loved ones ever reaching these stages of their lives, but sometimes it happens. And there is always someone who carries the burden of dealing with it more than any other.
The film does a phenomenal job of communicating the quiet that comes with perpetual depression. Water left running is suddenly more noticeable, as is a window left open during a rain storm. The quiet is no longer peaceful; a home once filled with music is now stale with decay.
Every part of the movie (the acting, the script, the direction) is good, but I enjoyed none of it.
Life is hard enough as it is.