Review: The Edge of Love (2008)

The Edge of Love (2008)

Directed by: John Maybury | 106 minutes | drama, romance, biography | Actors: Keira Knightley, Sienna Miller, Matthew Rhys, Cillian Murphy, Simon Armstrong, Paul Brooke, Huw Ceredig, Richard Clifford, Richard Dillane, Rachel Essex, Anne Lambton, Raymond Llewellyn, Alastair Mackenzie, Anthony ODonnell, Jonathan Phillips, Camilla Rutherford, Lisa Stansfield, Nick Stringer, Ben Batt, Geoffrey Beevers, Rachel Bell, Joel Dommett, Craig Gallivan, Callum Godfrey, Karl Johnson, Simon Kassianides, Neville Malcolm, Graham Suggs McPherson, Kent Olesen, Kyle Redmond-Jones, Jenny Runacre

‘The Edge of Love’ is a biopic in which we witness the life of poet Dylan Thomas (Matthew Rhys) during and just after World War II. Perhaps ‘biopic’ is not quite the right word to describe this film, because it does not only focus on the life of this writer, but actually especially on that of his two lovers; his childhood friend Vera (Keira Knightley) and his wife Caitlin (Sienna Miller), between whom a close friendship develops.

When singer Vera bumps into her childhood friend Dylan Thomas – with whom she used to experience golden times in Wales – in one of the seedy, underground nightlife spots in London, the spark immediately flies again. Vera is therefore initially not happy when Dylan suddenly introduces his wife Caitlin to her after a few pleasant encounters. But, against all odds, these two become best friends, even though Vera still loves Dylan. This problem seems solved when young soldier William (Cillian Murphy) introduces himself to Vera, of whom he is a big fan. She likes him enough to accept his marriage proposal. But these are times of war…

William is sent to the mainland, leaving his now pregnant wife with Dylan and Caitlin. The three stragglers leave for Wales, which is the beginning of a very complicated time. Does Dylan actually like Caitlin, or does he like Vera more? And does Vera actually love her husband William, or does Dylan? And can Caitlin still be friends with the woman who still hasn’t gotten over her love for Dylan?

‘The Edge of Love’ was written by Sharman Macdonald, the mother of Keira Knightley. She originally wrote the role of Caitlin for her daughter, but she soon set her sights on the role of Vera. Caitlin is played by Sienna Miller, who took over this role from Lindsay Lohan just before filming began, who had to drop out, which might be a good thing, because somehow you can’t imagine Lohan in a drama like ‘The Edge’. of Love’. Miller is doing very well, and was even nominated as Best Supporting Actress for a British Independent Film Award for the role of Caitlin. Although the story revolves around Dylan Thomas, his work – poetry and propaganda during the government – ​​is not the focus of this film, although it is touched upon. Much more is focused on the complicated relationship that takes place between the main characters, and the strange friendship, which has an occasional hostile tinge, between Vera and Caitlin. Occasionally ‘The Edge of Love’ is reminiscent of the film ‘Closer’ (2004), which also focuses on the complicated relationship between four characters.

It takes a while to get into the story. The characters are introduced to the viewer in fairly short scenes. Slowly but surely the whole begins to grow into a beautiful and very captivating film that never bores. The time period is very nicely captured. The beginning is set in somewhat shabby pre-war London, but then the story moves to Wales, where the beautifully portrayed nature plays a starring role. The interesting thing about ‘The Edge of Love’ is that it’s mostly about the characters and all their developments and emotions, rather than being a movie, of which there are already so many, that tries to portray the horrors of the Second World War. to bring. This story is mainly about those left behind, who try to live their lives in difficult times. Each and every one of the actors put down excellent acting performances.

‘The Edge of Love’ is a beautiful film, with beautiful acting, fascinating characters, and all this beautifully portrayed. Unfortunately, the film does not make a very big impression, but that is condoned thanks to all the other plus points.

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