Director: Kenneth Lonergan.
Cast: Casey Affleck, Michelle Williams, Lucas Hedges, Kyle Chandler, Gretchen Mol. 137 minutes
Norminated for 6 Academy Awards:
Best Director – Kenneth Lonergan
Best Actor – Casey Affleck
Best Supporting Actor – Lucas Hedges
Best Supporting Actress – Michelle Williams
Best Original Screenplay – Kenneth Lonergan
Manchester by the Sea revolves around a horrible tragedy. My review won’t give away what that tragedy is as when you see the film, the director wants you to discover it.
The film commences with main character Lee (Casey Afflick who gives amazing performance and been nominated for best actor at the Oscars) who is angry with the world (randomly picks flights in bars) and has isolated himself from his family including his brother Joe (Kyle Chandler) who he shared a strong bond with. This is shown through flashbacks we see of Joe, Lee and Joe’s son, Patrick. Lee is based in a small town called Quincy and has no plans to head back to his old home town of Manchester until a phone call changes his life forever. We soon learn why if it wasn’t for this phone call, he would have never returned to Manchester and was happy to go about being a janitor for four buildings and being paid minimal money.
Upon receiving the life changing call, Lee rushes to the hospital but is too late to say his goodbye to Joe. His reaction illustrates that sorrow seems to be embedded in Lee and takes the news a lot less sobbingly compared to Joe’s best friend. Lee’s sorrow is caused by a gigantic mistake which we aren’t aware of as yet, and makes us wonder why he is so well known in Manchester.
The will has Lee as the guardian for Joe’s 16 year old son Patrick. And the relationship between Lee and Patrick forms the nucleus of the movie. Patrick’s mother walked out years earlier and has started a brand new life.
Michelle Williams who play’s Lee’s ex in the movie plays a small part in the movie. But the way she plays her character is amazing and explains why she has received an Academy Award nomination for best actress.
Lee learns to deal with an energised teenager who has an out of control sex drive and is busy with school, ice hockey and being in a band. We start to learn he may actually give meaning and a purpose to his uncle’s life.
We learn of the horrible tragedy and that plays a part in what decisions Lee ultimately makes in regard to his and Patrick’s future.
The way the movie is scripted and put together is marvelous, and deserving to have won a nomination for best picture at the Academy Awards.
In cinemas February 2, 2017