Tom (Liam Neeson) and Joan (Lesley Manville) have been married for many years. Their daily life? Debate (in a playful way) around nontrivial matters. For example about a juice maker that they don’t have. It is even more romantic than other expressions of love which at first glance are more passionate, such as love poetry. The two of them are already in a phase where love does not need to be expressed every day, as a result of long-term togetherness. But that doesn’t mean that love is gone. On the contrary.
Tom always had a stock of humor to answer what Joan said, as if he was never serious. “Can you just act normal once?” Asked Joan. But we know, Tom’s “abnormality” is the reason his wife felt at home for so long, even after a tragedy that tested their strength. Until the next test comes. Joan was diagnosed with breast cancer. How big will the challenges be in the future? What if the worst case scenario approaches? Worries took over their minds. Top Movie Site
It is true that the story centers on the cancer that the protagonist suffers from, but viewers who expect the usual tearjerker are likely to be disappointed to find the film too “cold”. Of course, in recent years the intensity of conflict has increased, but overall, this is not a porn disease that relies on hyperbole emotions. Written by Owen McCafferty who has had experience in producing theater scripts, it is not surprising that Ordinary Love became a “chatty” film. Maybe this is the result if there is a Before Midnight character who gets cancer.
Tom and Joan spoke softly, even whispering occasionally. The camera never takes too far from the two of them, only moves when needed, even then at a slow tempo, as if the director duo Lisa Barros D’Sa and Glenn Leyburn want to put the audience in the intimate space of the two protagonists. Meanwhile, the music by David Holmes (Ocean’s Eleven, Hunger, Logan Lucky) brings out familiar notes through melancholy piano accompaniment, occasionally added with dreamy synth nuances.
As already mentioned, Tom and Joan tend to talk about trivial matters with a lot of jokes. Even after the chemo process started, Tom’s chirps still made Joan (and the audience) laugh. Everything seems ….. ordinary. At first glance there is nothing extraordinary, but that does not mean it is not special. Because love, even in its most ordinary form, is already extraordinary.
Even though its approach is to stay away from the clichédness of porn disease, Ordinary Love seems to be stuck with templates. In the middle of treatment, Joan meets Peter (David Wilmot), her daughter’s former teacher, who is suffering from terminal cancer. Meanwhile, Tom (only in one sequence), shared his feelings with Peter’s partner, Steve (Amit Shah). The meeting of two individuals with the same fate which ends up strengthening each other is a familiar element in a disease-themed film. Ordinary Love does not make a difference, even as if it only includes it for the sake of fulfilling obligations, without having a significant impact, either in the form of emotions or understanding more about dealing with cancer.
Neeson performed well, reminding that even though he was later better known as a champion of action, he had first made his name as an actor full of sensitivity. This time, his deep voice was not used to intimidate criminals, but to calm his wife’s heart through expressions of affection. Meanwhile, from Manville, we can feel that a pile of things is raging in Joan’s heart, even though it is not visible from the outside. And when — like the opening scene —Ordinary Love closes the story at Christmas to create a full circle, we know that it’s not only the setting of the time that is “immutable,” their love is too. Movie Review