Thoughts After Rewatch: The Hours

The second film to get the TAR treatment is Stephen Daldry’s The Hours (2002), or Mrs. Dulloway, as it should’ve been called.

Watching The Hours a year after my last viewing, I learned that this film has a very close relationship with the letter “D”. It’s a depressing drama (quite a downer, really), about death, the novel Mrs. Dalloway and how it affects three women: its suicidal author, Virginia Woolf (Nicole Kidman), a suicidal woman who reads it (Julianne Moore) and another one who’s basically living it (Meryl Streep).

The good: The film’s strong suit is definitely the acting. Nicole Kidman (who got an Oscar for her role) was very good, but this time it was clearer that the standout was Meryl Streep. Toni Collette and John C. Reilly do a lot with very brief roles. I’ve said before that despite the talent I’m sure he has, Ed Harris never seems to wow me. I have to say though, I’m starting to warm up to him, and a key scene in this movie featuring his character is still as affecting as the first time.

The bad: The character development is a little lacking, and the film is at times unbearably slow and uneventful.

The ugly: Nothing really ugly besides Nicole Kidman’s nose, hehe. Well, yes, but it’s a minor thing. I don’t like the way Julianne Moore cries. She’s a fantastic actress but her crying is so unrealistic. I first noticed this in Magnolia.

Favorite scene: Virginia, suffocated by life in Richmond, wants to return to London. She has a discussion with her husband Leonard at the train station.

Favorite line: “This is my right; it is the right of every human being. I choose not the suffocating anesthetic of the suburbs, but the violent jolt of the Capital, that is my choice. The meanest patient, yes, even the very lowest is allowed some say in the matter of her own prescription. Thereby she defines her humanity. I wish, for your sake, Leonard, I could be happy in this quietness. But if it is a choice between Richmond and death, I choose death.”

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