Directed by Julie Gavras, “Late Bloomers”, a film about a married couple at the turning point of their lives, made its US debut at the Stony Brook Film Festival last week. Isabella Rossellini and William Hurt play the leading roles as Mary and Adam, a middle aged couple at the crossroads of youth and old age.
As she struggles with her anger and frustration, adjusting to being almost 60, by taking water aerobics classes and purchasing grip bars for the bathtub, Isabella Rossellini fitfully tries to explain “what’s the matter”. “Adam”, she explains, “the matter is I’m old. You’re old. We have crossed over to the other side.”
The couple’s journey into the next phase of their lives include a separation, reluctant affairs and the realization that parents may have to rely on their children. And those children may have to learn to manage their parents, even as they refuse to act like adults.
The film teases us with potential of a European ending, that is, that not everyone lives happily ever after but, notably decides to offer the happy ending that American audiences love. Adam and Mary reconcile more content with each other than before.
Late Bloomers is an intricate movie with a playful score and realistic demeanor about growing older. Mary’s mom sums it up best when she tells her daughter, “What do you think happens, when you get old, you suddenly discover wisdom?” Well, it turns out that it’s just like any other age; you just have to figure it out.
Family Entertainment: PG 13/ R rating
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