Reviewed by Tami Smith, Film Reviewer for Shockya
Director: Harry Macqueen
Screenwriter: Harry Macqueen
Cast: Colin Firth, Stanley Tucci, Pippa Haywood, Peter Macqueen, James Dreyfus, Truffles
Release Date: January 29, 2021
Sam (Colin Firth), a pianist, and Tusker (Stanley Tucci), a writer, are a sixty-year old couple that have been partners for twenty years. After Tusker is diagnosed with dementia, two year prior, their lives start to change. As Tusker’s condition progresses and he begins to lose control, Sam becomes a caregiver. They take a road trip in a RV with their low-maintenance dog Ruby (Truffles) into the lush English Lake District. During the trip they indulge in creating daily tapes called: The Dementia Hour. Can you tell that it has gotten worse? asks Tusker. Their nightly activities include following the stars with a telescope. They also visit Sam’s brother, whom Tusker knows very well.
While Sam is planning for Tusker’s future decline, the latter makes plans for others to take care of Sam when he is no longer able to. Feeling a loss of control and not wanting to impose his illness on Sam, Tusker plans to terminate his life. But Sam plans to take care of his lover “till the end”. Feeling he is becoming a passenger and that the illness is taking him to a place where he does not want to go, he wants to be remembered for who he was, and not for who he is about to become. That is the only thing he can control and he can’t wait longer.
Supernova is a theatrical film that includes dialogues between Sam and Tusker accompanied by barking and tail-wagging by Ruby. The screenplay breaks every so often to show the majestic English countryside or an occasional interaction between the duo and the outside world.
A morose cello music sets the appropriate tone for this couple who had passed the autumn of life and now is headed into an inevitable winter.
Director Harry Macqueen assembled a first-rate veteran cast with Colin Firth as Sam and Stanley Tucci as Tusker. Tucci plays a man who is declining quickly and is unable to stop the fall, thus resorting to a “final solution” of sorts. Firth shows a character we can all identify with, unwilling to accept reality while wanting to delay an inevitable end. Supporting performances are given by party guests: Pippa Haywood as Lilly, Peter Macqueen as Clive and James Dreyfus as Tim.
Cinematography for Supernova was done by Dick Pope with a scenic choice of locations in Keswick, England and the English Lake District.
Supernova would be appreciated mostly by mature audiences, willing to go through ninety-three minutes of character-driven plot.
93 minutes Rated: R © Tami Smith, Film Reviewer