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Truly Madly Deeply

Old 01-02-02, 02:56 PM
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Truly Madly Deeply

Anthony Minghella (who went on to direct 'The English Patient') was writing 'Inspector Morse' when fledgling BBC films approached him about writing a feature film. "Only if I can direct", he replied.

They agreed. 'Truly Madly Deeply' was shot in 28 days, for $650,000 (less than it would cost George Lucas to kill Jar-Jar) on 16 mm.

Don't go looking for big production values.

The movie is about Nina (Juliet Stephenson) is a thirties-something Londoner who has been devastated by the death of her cello-playing lover Jamie (Alan Rickman). Her apartment is beginning to self destruct. A rat scurries onto her bed; she spends the rest of the night on the couch with cricket bat, and a cat sculpture standing guard.

At a therapy session, she gives voice to her grief, anger and rage in a powerful emotional scene that stays with you.

One day, as she is playing piano, Jamie comes back to her apartmen as a ghost, playing his cello. Not a ephemeral being, but as a solid bodied man, albiet one with cold lips and a fear of catching a cold that will last forever.

Nina's initial euphoria about being reunited ("I wish I could make the rest of the world go away") gives way to different feelings, as dead friends, all-night video fests and apartment re-arranging take the bloom off the relationship.

The movie is about attachment and loss, letting go and moving on. Poignant and funny, with great performances by Stephenson and Rickman, it is a little GEM of a movie.

Minghella's commentary takes you through the trials of a first time director. Even with him pointing out the problems of continuity and lighting, the film holds up because its emotional core is so solid.

Worth owning.

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