carolI can’t imagine anyone else directing the Patricia Highsmith adaptation of her novel, The Price of Salt. Todd Haynes was born to create Carol. Every moment in Carol quietly tells the simple story of two people falling in love. Problem is it’s the 1950’s and the characters are women. It’s not just that Carol is married with a child and Therese has a boyfriend. What they are doing is considered a mental illness and worse – illegal. Let the melodrama ensue. Yet Haynes steers clear of classic melodrama preferring to paint Carol with subtler strokes allowing the complications of their love story to contain the drama. Cate Blanchett and Rooney Mara are luscious as the opposites-attract couple. Cate’s Carol is older and sophisticated. Rooney’s Therese is fresh and awkward. Carol’s best friend and ex-lover Sarah Paulson’s Abby adds a depth and sophistication to the secondary characters unfortunately missing in Carol’s in-laws and the men at the Times. In the end, Carol is gorgeous, heart-breaking, and dreamily paced. Carol is the antithesis of big budget Hollywood romcoms where every moment has to jolt you, make you LOL. Carol is studied, provocative, and delicious. I want to watch it again on the small screen when the Blu-ray gets released. It’s great seeing a lesbian love story given the full Hollywood treatment. 4.5 out of 5 for this instant classic.


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