It matters not that I seem to be the only person on the face of the Earth to have actually seen this film, despite the fact that it stars the reliably riveting Tilda Swinton.
Not only is Swinton foxy beyond belief but she plays a Russian émigré. Ergo, she delivers dialog entirely in Italian as a native Russian speaker would. Despite being British. So yeah, she’s kind of unbelievably amazing and puts into perspective just how talented an actress like Gwyneth Paltrow isn’t.
But that’s only the half of it. Without stumbling or soapboxing or pandering even a smidge, I Am Love expertly explores fraught themes including – but not limited to - love, lust, death, freedom, guilt, horror and joy. And it never once feels false.
Watching it for a second time last night (blessedly, my beloved Toronto Public Library has copies available for borrowing), I was reminded of all the big huge things this little film successfully takes on, and was again flattened by its deft hand. And yeah, I cried like a hungry baby with soggy diapers at the end again.
So as not to spoil things for anyone who might want to seek out this gem, I won’t divulge plot details (and DO NOT read Wikipedia’s entry which gives it all away). But I will say this: even I can believe in love again watching this movie which, as anyone who knows me will attest, is saying something.
Of course, I don’t believe it could ever happen FOR me or TO me - and I have an unassailable track record of wicked heartbreak to prove it. But that’s beside the point. I Am Love is like a postcard soaring in on the wings of hope, but waaay less corny than that last line.
If only all movies could be so affecting.