Movies to help us through: “Another Year”

By Michael Stevenson

The Hobbledehoy never fail to see the latest film from British director Mike Leigh. High Hopes, Life Is Sweet, Career Girls, Happy Go Lucky are each wonderful films, but the one we need to help us through the Covid-19 lockdown is 2010’s Another Year.

Why is film necessary viewing during our confinement? I love how the characters in Another Year take care of each other. The script covers four seasons in the life of one British couple, Tom (Jim Broadbent) and Gerri (Ruth Sheen) and their small group of friends. The couple tends a seasonal garden that requires tender care, as does their challenging friend “Mary” (Lesley Manville) – a deeply troubled narcissist trying to hold onto her youth by pursuing her friend’s much younger son. There is birth, death, disease and always much love throughout.

Leigh’s actors Broadbent (Another Year, Life Is Sweet) Sheen (High Hopes, Vera Drake) and Manville (High Hopes) each give brilliant performances.

Said one reviewer of Another Year: “Ordinary people doing really ordinary things and making these things really important.”

I suppose that’s what we are each doing during this lockdown – making seemingly ordinary things, like staying at home, really important. And caring for each other, even our crazy friends.

Have you seen Another Year ? If so, tell us your thoughts. Have your own film recommendation to help us get through? Tell us.

Watch ANOTHER YEAR on Amazon

Interview with Jim Broadbent and Lesley Manville