Carol

Carol ★★★★★

*previously a 99, now a 100*

If you look back, the filmography of Todd Haynes seems to be more about moments than the culmination of a film's story or emotional resonance. Safe takes the increasing paranoia of a housewife and lets it all scream out in a single moment (actually, a single shot, if you can excuse the vagueness) which is seemingly trivial, but horrifying all the same. In Far From Heaven, It's the sudden sight of a hidden taboo, passionate and beautiful but unsettling because of the drenched Sirkian atmosphere that Haynes allowed the audience to get lost in.

In the cinema of Todd Haynes, ordinary objects and lingering sensations are the catalysts for our own recollections. We all remember a time where we saw a glimpse of someone, perhaps previously unknown or an old friend/partner, and the world didn't stop for it. People pass by like mobs, cars block with their constant movements, and the bustling traffic drowns out a chance to soak in the encounter with any grasp on the situation. Although we soon zone back into reality, that yearning peek isn't enough.

Carol weaves a symphony (yeah, everyone has been describing it this way but it's so true) of these tiny, insignificant details; small in the vastness of time but immeasurable in the growth of their hearts. A pair of gloves "lost", a song flowing from the radio in a tunnel that seemed to be beamed from another planet, and the overwhelming embrace of two bodies are matter-of-fact in reality, but not to the audience and certainly not to the characters. Haynes directs each particularly important frame with the idea of memory already seeped into the grain, and it allows for the romance to flourish because you get a feeling of transcendent connection.

A love story for the ages.

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