TÁR ★★★★★

Hard to put into words every single feeling I experienced and remarkable achievement witnessed during this comeback opus, but I'd be remiss if I didn't acknowledge Todd Field first and foremost for delivering this masterpiece. His direction is specific and controlled and if I hadn't known who was at the helm beforehand, I'd have thought this was the product of some European visionary.

Many times during its colossal runtime—not a minute unused—I was reminded of the work of Michael Haneke, which I'm assuming is not an accident; even his usual editor, Monika Willi, worked on this film. But TÁR does not feel typical of an American director and I mean that with great admiration. I can't imagine I will watch a better directed film this year.

I could listen to Lydia Tár talk about the art and history of conducting until my body shrivels up and blows away in the wind. Purposely cold, but never once boring, the film informs, teaches, instructs almost on a pretentious level, but that makes its finale all the more satisfying.

Cate Blanchett embodies this character with such ferocity; there is a commitment on such a visceral level that it feels like she has been rehearsing for this part her whole life. Easily the performance of the year and one of the great turns of the decade.

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