An intimate look into how a breast cancer diagnoses impacts the lives of a middle aged couple and how they must battle to survive the tough turn.
When Joan is diagnosed with breast cancer her view on life is about to become a little bit different. With only her husband Tom around her they must both get through it together. Even though at times it pushes them further apart, it demonstrates that it is not easy for anyone involved in the situation. We slowly find out that they did have a daughter but it is never revealed exactly what happened to her, but that she was killed. She must have been early 20s as well considering the photograph on the fireplace shows her graduation.
A very tough to watch film which holds nothing back when it comes to cancer. From the diagnosis and the different procedures you must go through in order to remove the cancer. It is now something that pretty much everyone must have gone through and had to deal with in some way. Parts of the film could easily be used to show what happens when you find a lump and then what comes next. This could become very important to help people understand the process and possibly be a little bit less nervous about it all? That was something that I thought about as seeing what will happen to you compared to having no idea at all could help people.
No escape from reality is certainly one thing this made me think about. Even though the couple still had some silly arguments and the little things they used to tease each other about, when cancer became a thing it was never going to be easily forgotten about. Leading to some arguments which neither of them actually meant, it just felt wrong to be watching it unfold. Wrong in the sense that this did not feel like a film, it felt like real life. The hair scene was particular sad and tough to watch,
The performances were remarkable and that was essential in such an intimate story. It actually felt just wrong watching at times because it just felt real it did not feel like a film at all. Other than the fact that it was Lesley Manville and Liam Neeson, who worked so perfectly together. Managing to capture some humour at some awful moments, surely that is how a lot of people will react especially men when they struggle with emotions? It really will hit so many nerves with so many people and be brutal if you have been through this or any cancer in general.
I found the sub-plot with Peter and Steve to be even more heartbreaking as well, managing to show different scenarios and that it is not all the same. All terrible but we don’t always get survival from cancer. I can only imagine how many people will not be able to actually watch this film though as it will feel too real and act as a tough reminder if they have been through this with a loved one. A very impressive film with Neeson and Manville on top form, amazing performances from start to finish.