Date: 02/05/2023 Times: 7:30 pm - 9:10 pm

Living has been universally acclaimed as an outstanding film with an outstanding performance by Bill Nighy. Bill Nighy was nominated for Best Actor in the Golden Globes, the BAFTAs and the Oscars. The screenplay is by Kazuo Ishiguro, the Nobel prize-winning author, and adapted from a screenplay written for the film Ikuru (1952) by the great Japanese auteur, Akira Kirosawa, who also directed. It is the story of an ordinary man, reduced by years of oppressive office routine to a shadow existence, who at the eleventh hour makes a supreme effort to turn his dull life into something wonderful.

The trick that Oliver Hermanus, the director, and his crew pull, is not to just set Living in a United Kingdom of yesteryear but makes you feel like you’re watching something that actually played in a British theatre in 1952. The ye olde Golden Age credits sequence is merely the tip of the retro iceberg, and it’s possible to simply bask in the time-machine stylistics of it all. The South African director has a love for God’s-eye view shots and geometric patterns, which makes several compositions — notably a shot of commuters walking over a railway bridge while train tracks cut across the screen diagonally below them — worthy of being hung on museum walls. Sandy Powell’s costumes and Helen Scott’s production design don’t conjure a past age so much as outright resurrect it. Jamie Ramsay’s cinematography is somehow both lush and stark; bits of color contrast against loads of charcoal grays and pinstriped blacks, while shadows can either heighten a space or add to a workplace’s drabness. Kazuo Ishiguro has an impeccable ear for the speech patterns of the period’s films and the way that words can illuminate or obscure.

Click below for review, trailer and more information.


Year: 2022

Country: UK

Cert: 12A

Duration: 102 mins

Dir: Oliver Hermanus

'A quiet, note-perfect performance from Bill Nighy.'

Venue: William Loveless Hall