Time. A physical quantity that can’t be slowed down or speeded up. The only thing that bends time is our mind. An hour at work is longer than the same amount of time spent with friends. This is an effect that lets us experience time other than it works. Dementia does that too and “The Father” shows how hard that can be when you can’t tell the difference between what takes place in the present and what already happened.
“The Father” is a chamber play based on a theatre play of the same name and starring Anthony Hopkins as father Anthony, Olivia Colman as Anne, Imogen Poots as Laura, Rufus Sewell as Paul, Olivia Williams as Catherine and Mark Gatiss as Bill. An ensemble of great actors and actresses in an environment, perfect for them. Combined with an interesting cut the film becomes an experience that gives us an image of how dementia works. We live through this with Anthony and feel what he feels.
The most terrible thing about dementia is the loss of time. Time with your loved ones, time understanding and the control of how you wanna spend your time. This is the emotional weight of the film that hits you. As already mentioned, there is a fascinating way the film is cut which gets even better once you realise that the cut is in perfect symbiosis with the plot of “The Father”. Unfortunately, I can’t explain that in particular without spoiling. In addition to that, the film contains various points of interest in the apartment of Anthony where the entire action takes place, which are crucial to the story and partly have a metaphorical meaning behind them.
If you ever want to know what dementia feels like, watch “The Father”. It’s a film I wouldn’t only recommend, rather I think it’s a must-see for everyone who loves film and the art behind it. Rightly awarded with two Oscars.