DIRECTOR: Clint Eastwood
CAST: Matt Damon, Cecile De France, Jay Mohr, George and Frankie McLaren and Bryce Dallas Howard
RUNNING TIME: 127 min
Death is inevitable. But it isn’t something one chooses to mull over.
And because of the morbid subject matter directors don’t feel the need to explore it unless it is demanded by the script.
Hereafter is penned by Peter Morgan, who was inspired to look at the impact of and around death after losing a close friend in an accident.
And the heart-wrenching sentiments of the characters bear testament to his feelings at the time.
This compelling movie looks at the unusual ways death visits several individuals from different social strata.
George Lonegan (Damon) is a psychic who gets a regular blue-collar job as he believes his ability is a curse.
His brother Billy feels George should embrace his gift as he helps people find closure after the death of a loved one.
Meanwhile, French journalist Marie Lelay (De France) struggles to deal with a near-death experience after being trapped by a tsunami.
Her curiosity about the experience affects her newly flourishing career and her relationship, but Marie is determined to raise awareness and shed light on the issue by sharing her own experience.
And then there is Marcus, who is struggling to deal with the loss of his twin brother Jacob, who was killed in a car accident.
His numerous attempts to make contact with Jacob in the afterlife are the catalyst for him eventually crossing paths with George.
How these three protagonists piece together their lives while battling with their own demons forms the crux of the story.
Given his years in Hollywood, Eastwood is a director and producer worth his weight in salt.
He has an eye for detail, a knack for cajoling the best performance from his cast and his direction is unfussy but effective.
Forget the kick-ass Damon we have seen in The Bourne Identity franchise.
This time around he delivers an understated performance of note playing a John Edward-type character conflicted about helping others at much cost to his personal life.
De France is absolutely fabulous in her spirited role that is executed with praiseworthy conviction.
Actors George and Frankie McLaren, as inseparable twins Marcus and Jacob, tug at the heart with their earnest performances as they protect their druggie mother from the authorities.
While Hereafter unfolds in a very poetic fashion, it is a movie that will appeal to a niche audience.
Food for thought, this movie may provide… but it fails to linger long after the end credits roll.
If you liked… Munich, Flatliners, Awake and The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo… you’ll enjoy this. - Tonight