This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.
Lindsey Otts’s review published on Letterboxd:
This review may contain spoilers.
**Ok, so I feel like I can coherently review this film after having been entranced and obsessed for three days.
I did not see this again, although I don't know how long I can go before seeing it again.**
Carol moves with an elegance unlike any film this year. It lives and breathes with the period and its characters, who feel trapped in a time and place in which they cannot fully express how they feel.
However, Carol is not a preachy or obvious film. The film is about a lesbian relationship in the 1950s, but it never becomes a film that shouts a message to the audience in an awkward manner. We see the unfairness of how they are treated for what they feel but it's not the main focus of the film.
Carol's strengths come from its two leads. Most of the emotions that Therese and Carol experience are shown to us by their facial expressions, their body language, and their initial awkwardness.
Some complain of the film being cold because of its restraint, but I felt the emotions the film put forth.
On a technical level, the film is near perfect. The costumes are not only beautiful but reflect the characters' personalities perfectly. Carol is elegant and feminine, wearing bright colors and fur coats. She's dressed like a Hollywood star from the 1940s.
Therese is dressed in simpler clothing, though no less stylish. Her clothes are more modern, and more utilitarian. She is a photographer who goes to bars with her male friends, and doesn't focus much on fashion.
The cinematography is some of the best I've seen this year. Scenes are bathed in shades of red and green, characters are restrained and obscured by doorways, streetlights, and windows.
In short, Carol is fucking amazing and I have been sitting in this coffee shop for 2 hours and this is what came of it.