It's been a ridiculously long wait for The Father to get a proper release here in the UK, waiting on a cinema release rather than doing so digitally, which was a popular method for studios throughout the pandemic. If you are thinking of a trip to the cinema to see this film all I will say is prepare yourself to be an emotional wreck because The Father is powerful stuff.

A man (Anthony Hopkins) refuses all assistance from his daughter as he ages. As he tries to make sense of his changing circumstances, he begins to doubt his loved ones, his own mind and even the fabric of his reality.

The emotional weight of The Father is felt throughout the entire production, Florian Zeller adapting his own successful play so brilliantly to become one of the most emotionally driven films of the year. Along with Christopher Hampton, Zeller writes a strong screenplay that takes the narrative from stage to screen in a way that not all films that attempt to do this achieve. It's seamless and has the feel of a film rather than as if you were watching a stage show performance being filmed for the cinema.

It's a stunning and devastating look into how dementia tears a person apart from inside their own mind, one of those nasty diseases you wish we could just see the back of. There's been a number of films over the past few years that have focused on dementia however, none of them come close to The Father in how poignant it is on its audience. Beautifully crafted from the inside out, its production design being a major asset in just how they tell this story.

Coming to the performances, you all know how good Anthony Hopkins must be in the lead role as he walked away with the Academy Award for Best Actor earlier in the year. It was a moment that shocked as it seemed as if the Academy were building the ceremony up for a Chadwick Boseman posthumous win but Hopkins' win was deserved nonetheless. He's utterly sensational as Anthony and will bring many a person to tears as he battles the disease that's destroying him from the inside. He's supported by a mightily impressive cast where Olivia Colman proves once again why exactly she is considered a national treasure of this country.

I watched this a few months back now and it has stayed with me for a very long time, one scene in particular being a moment you'd have to be made of stone to not have a reaction to. Definitely worth a trip to the cinema for but make sure you stock up on tissues prior to your visit because you are certainly going to need them.

Verdict: ½


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