When Did You Last See Your Father?

Release Date: June 6, 2008
Limited release

No, don't look into the light!

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77/196 Max Braden I don't normally like dreary 50s/60s flashbacks but the sadness of this love-hate drama becomes effective by the end.

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From director Anand Tucker, who previously helmed the under-rated Shopgirl, comes this exploration of a relationship between father and son. Told from the perspective of 40-year-old Blake (Colin Firth), the story unfolds through flashbacks and present day storytelling as we see him struggle with his father's suffering from cancer.

Blake's father, Arthur Morrison (Jim Broadbent) is a GP who shares a practice with his wife, Kim (Juliet Stevenson). In addition to Blake, they also have another child, daughter Gillian. The film shuffles back and forth from the past to the present, and begins by showing us an event that embarrassed Blake tremendously as a child. Arthur, believing himself better than others and entitled to all he wishes, hits the hard shoulder so that he can avoid a long line of traffic during holiday. During Blake's flashbacks, we also learn that Arthur seems to have had an extramarital affair with a woman named Beaty, whom the Blake meets as a child. Beaty has a daughter, Josie, who Blake believes is his father's daughter, and in struggling to find out the truth about her, learns some surprising things about the relationship between his parents. Ultimately, Blake's struggle to accept his father is called into focus when Arthur battles cancer. Blake must reconcile his hard feelings with the way he sees the man today.

With Firth and Broadbent, When Did You Last See Your Father? has an exemplary cast that can certainly deliver the goods. It is undoubtedly somber subject matter that won't be easy to watch, but if the film's seven nominations at the British Independent Film Awards are any indication, there is something special happening here. Audiences who appreciate family drama and small-scale British productions will turn out for this one, but it's probably going to make the bulk of its revenue in North America on DVD. (Kim Hollis/BOP)

Vital statistics for When Did You Last See Your Father?
Main Cast Gina McKee, Jim Broadbent, Colin Firth
Supporting Cast Juliet Stevenson, Sarah Lancashire, Matthew Beard, Elaine Cassidy
Director Anand Tucker
Screenwriter David Nicholls
Distributor Sony Pictures Classics
Trailer Click Here for Trailer
Official Site http://sonyclassics.com/index.php?filmid=325
Rating PG-13
Screen Count 8
Talent in red has entry in The Big Picture



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