Hot Take: Carol is a better movie after the fact, as it sinks in as it’s such a small film it has moments that are somewhat mundane. Afterward, it is in the mundane and humdrum where the film thrives as it’s a classic love story with very little emphasis on the fact that the love story is between two women.
I’m torn when it comes to Carol. On one hand, the film’s ability to capture the 1950s and deliver unbelievable chemistry between it’s two main characters — Carol (Cate Blanchett) and Therese (Rooney Mara) — are worth heaping praises. On the other hand, the film’s mundane tale and rather plodding pace might not be worth the payoffs of some excellent scenes.
The love affair of Carol and Therese is handled with extreme care and affection. There’s little agenda. There are few speeches or overt messages. However, the film has a powerful message without even trying.
“Spoiler Free” Pros
- Blanchett and Mara
The scenes between Blanchett and Mara simmer and eventually boil over.
- Capturing the Tone of the Period
The vibe of the ’50s is front and center in Carol but without being blatant. What’s impressive about the movie as a whole is it’s subtlety and it’s ever present in it’s portrayal of the time period.
“Spoiler Free” Cons
- There’s Not A Lot Happening
At 118 minutes, not much happens. I’m not sure it’s an editing issue but the tale develops slowly and it almost never boils and when it does it only boils for a few minutes.