Colin Firth gives a powerful and poignant performance as a gay British literature professor in California mourning the loss of his long-time lover (Matthew Goode). The sensitively directed adaptation of Christopher Isherwood’s 1951 novel by fashion designer-turned-filmmaker Tom Ford follows Firth through one day as he tries to come to terms with his new-found loneliness, interacting with enthusiastic student (Nicolas Hoult), a Spanish rent boy and his neighbour and best friend, divorced Englishwoman Julianne Moore.
Firth is superb. If there was any justice, he would snatch the Oscar from more box-office-friendly nominees like George Clooney. Ford’s successfully un-melodramatic debut is definitely auspicious.