Film Review: Manchester by the Sea

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*RUST RATING:¬†ūüõ•¬†ūüõ• (2/4) Sad Seagoers

Flash Summary

Lee Chandler’s (Casey Affleck) children have died in a fire and his wife (Michelle Williams) has subsequently left him and remarried. ¬†More death in the family ensues as Chandler’s brother dies. ¬†Upon the reading of the will, Chandler finds that his brother has given him custody of his¬†nephew Patrick (Lucas Hedges) because Patrick’s mother (Gretchen Mol) abandoned them years before. ¬†The film is all about family dynamics when death is involved.

The Players

Since the commentary surrounding this film has been all about the acting, the majority of my review will address these performances.

Casey Affleck

I viewed the film after its release in theatres and was looking forward to seeing Mr. Affleck’s critically acclaimed acting skills – there was a lot of hype surrounding it. ¬†After watching the film, I honestly do not understand this hype. ¬†Casey’s performance did nothing for me, his performance was flat and¬†monotonous.

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Michelle Williams

Michelle Williams, in stark contrast to Casey Affleck’s uninspired performance, delivers a dynamic and heartfelt performance! ¬†Even though¬†her time on screen is minimal in comparison, Williams delivers a dynamic and heartwrentching performance. ¬†The scene towards the end when she tries to get him back is an awe inspiring moment.

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Lucas Hedges

Along with Williams, Lucas Hedges’ performance is a standout in the film. ¬†This was a big part to take on and Hedges traverses the emotional waves of Patrick with great skill and care.

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Final Verdict

The film does not live up to all its critical hype, the engaging performances are too few and far between, especially with a film that runs over two hours.  My advice, skip it or wait until it comes out on Netflix.

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