Directed by: Stephen Daldry
Starring: Nicole Kidman, Julianne Moore, Meryl Streep, Ed Harris, Stephen Dillane, Jeff Daniels
When I first saw Stephen Daldry’s The Hours—a film that should have gotten the Best Picture Oscar and did snag one for Nicole Kidman’s performance as Virginia Woolf—I was convinced it was both pretentious and a masterpiece. Time has only increased my belief that it’s a masterpiece, but has made me a little less sure of how pretentious it is, in part because I can imagine no other way of doing the film. At the time, I wrote (in part): “The Hours is one of the richest films to come along in ages, and had I been able to see it in 2002, it would have figured as either my top film of the year or, at the very least, my second-place finisher. It is an amazingly tight work, exploring its complex, interwoven stories and themes in just under two hours—making it all the more remarkable, and a valuable lesson to filmmakers who think that extra length is a sign of Importance. The Hours is at once a heavily textured, remarkably dense work and a model of simplicity (the story lines are actually deceptively straightforward); this is filmmaking at its best. Yes, the film follows three narratives in three different time periods, but in the end, it’s really following the same story—or variations on it.” It’s an assessment, I stand by. To see the entire review go to: http://www.mountainx.com/movies/review/hours.php
The Asheville Film Society will screen The Hours Tuesday, Feb. 22, at 8 p.m. in the Cinema Lounge of the Carolina Asheville and will be hosted by Xpress movie critics Ken Hanke and Justin Souther. Hanke is the artistic director of the Asheville Film Society.