Nice Movie

I feel like I finally rented a movie that was really special. Each week I must watch at least 2 movies and for months I have been disappointed in the films that have been recommended to me from a variety of sources.

Things We Lost in the Fire is a totally modern movie. It is beautifully shot, written, directed and performed, and what about that music with Sweet Jane for the titles and Gustavo Santaolalla as composer of the theme.

Although the story is excellent, I feel like it is even more valuable as a vehicle for a multitude of striking contrasts. The drug addition of Jerry gives the director the opportunity to show the beast, Benicio Del Toro, set against the beauty of Halle Berry. And even here those roles reverse when Audrey, played by Berry, unleashes her own inner beast on Jerry who she invited to stay with her and her two children after the violent death of her husband. Another example is the contrast of the dingy rehab center where Jerry was working, and the gorgeous, modernist home of Audrey.

I am sure some will criticize this film because the director Susanne Bier lets her hand show through beautiful establishing shots, extreme close-ups and for making a film that is put together almost too perfectly. But I don't have a problem with that, just like I don't mind seeing brushstrokes when they make a painting a better work of art.