Double Academy Award® and BAFTA winning film The Father stars Anthony Hopkins in the eponymous role of a mischievous and highly independent man who, as he ages, refuses all assistance from his daughter Anne (Olivia Colman). Yet, such help has become essential following Anne’s decision to move to Paris with her partner. As Anne’s father tries to make sense of his changing circumstances, he begins to doubt his loved ones, his own mind and even the fabric of his reality.
Alongside Academy Award® winners Anthony Hopkins and Olivia Colman are Mark Gatiss (The Favourite, Sherlock), Imogen Poots (Green Room, A Long Way Down), Rufus Sewell (Judy, The Man in the High Castle) and Olivia Williams (Victoria & Abdul, An Education). The Father is drawn from the stage play of the same name, which was written by Florian Zeller and launched in Paris in 2012, winning a Moliere Award for Best Play, before hitting Broadway and London’s West End, where it won both Tony and Olivier Awards for Best Actor (for Frank Langella and Kenneth Cranham respectively). Zeller directed the film adaptation – his feature debut – filmed in London with a British cast, from a screenplay he co-wrote with playwright and screenwriter Christopher Hampton (Atonement, Dangerous Liaisons).
The Father presents an incredibly unique narrative as we see the story unfurl not from the perspective of the audience or Olivia Colman’s charecter but instead we see it from the mind of Anthony himself as we see events replayed with different perspectives ranging from the real to imagined in what is perhaps the best on-screen portrayal of what it’s like to suffer with dementia and doubt your own mind & memories. The direction and writing is not heavy-handed or over-the-top which allows you to make up your own mind about what is real or imagined. Hopkins gives a career-best performance that is worthy of his Academy Award as he portrays the charecter as equal parts enigmatic, charming & vulnerable in perhaps the rawest performance we have seen from Hopkins.
This could possibly only be matched by the wonderfully endearing and empathetic performance of Colman playing his daughter, as she struggles to deal with her father’s condition while at the same time trying to live her own life and find a balance. This combined with a subtle yet moving score from Ludovico Einaudi makes for an incredible cinematic experience and a masterful directorial debut from Zeller. 5/5
- Deleted Scenes
Around 5 minutes of scenes which are extended versions of those seen in the film
- French Virtual Premiere Q&A with director Florian Zeller, Anthony Hopkins and Olivia Colman
A very insightful discussion about the film and especially the casting of Hopkins/Colman as well as the process of making the film.