‘45 Years’ — Hold it together

Andrew Heigh’s in 45 Years follows Haneke’s devastating trail of quiet deconstruction of an old, well-established relationship. In Love it was the forgetting that drove the decay — forgetting how to function like a human being, not remembering the life you’ve shared together. In case of 45 Years it’s about knowing — the way the newly uncovered past reframes the present and disrupts the otherwise comfortably settled future.

Charlotte Rampling and Tom Courtney as the couple nearing their 45th anniversary fill every crevice of their homely Norfolk cottage with naturalistic, fully-fleshed warm feeling of understated love and partnership. This makes the draught, brought in by memories from 50 years earlier, so much colder in comparison. There’s old love involved and the inescapable ‘what if’ questions arise.

It’s very rare to be presented with a story in which the characters are powerless. There is no more future to be built, no time to start again — all that’s left is accepting the fate. Their lifelong collective emotional baggage adds depth to the couple’s internal struggles. The drama is just like their relationship — tangible.

45 Years‘s impact is slowly built up over the course of the 7 days leading up to the anniversary ceremony. Each day adds another layer to the already complicated and multi-faceted relationship. Unlike Paterson, 45 Years uses lack of action and subdued drama to its advantage. The unspoken and the left-out hit harder when at we’re at our most vulnerable.

A mental and emotional implosion that resounds long after the bold, inevitable ending.

// originally posted on my old blog