Movie of the Week: ‘A Single Man’

“A Single Man” (2009) – Fashion designer Tom Ford steps into the world of cinema and directs and co-writes “A Single Man”, the story of an English professor (Colin Firth) mourning the loss of his partner, Jim (Matthew Goode). 

Set in 1962 Los Angeles, Ford, cinematographer Edward Grau, production designer Dan Bishop, and art director Ian Phillips get all the visuals of the period exactly right, as birthday-cake-icing pinks and blues and muted browns regularly pop into the frame.  Meanwhile, George (Firth) is feeling blue and muted.  He can’t shake his pain, and Ford finds an ordinary day where he heads to work and makes plans with his best friend Charley (Julianne Moore) for afterwards.  Although we soon discover that this won’t be a typical 24-hour period, as George’s suffering may be worse than first imagined. 

Jim (Matthew Goode) and George (Colin Firth)

The film addresses American societal feelings about the gay community during the 1960s, and how this minority group needed to be silent.   In one particular scene, George delivers a class lecture where he calls out the said community in code and states that minorities who strike fear with the majority need to remain invisible.  Then again, it’s the invisibility that causes anxiety with the masses. 

George (Firth) and Charley (Julianne Moore)

“A Single Man” is a small, intimate look into one man’s heart (which is currently broken), soul, and his desire to “just get through the goddamn day.” 

Firth earned an Oscar nomination for his work, and Nicholas Holt, Moore, and Goode give strong, necessary performances to help voice George’s story in Ford’s gorgeously-filmed picture. 

⭐⭐⭐ 1/2 out of ⭐⭐⭐⭐

Image and Trailer credits: The Weinstein Company

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