I just saw Never Let Me Go for lunch. Directed by Mark Romanek, who is more of a music video director but did One Hour Photo. It stars Carey Mulligan, Keira Knightley, and Andrew Garfield. It’s written by Alex Garland who previously penned The Beach, Sunshine and 28 Days Later . It’s based off the book by Kazuo Ishiguro.
Here’s the short of it, medical technology has advanced so much that they can clone people for harvesting. Somewhere in the island of England schools pop up all around that nurture these clones. They don’t know everything, and they’re somewhat lied to, they’re “ripe” age is when they’re around 18 or so. And they leave the school houses to go live in cottages with other clones from other schools. There’s a group of three friends from a school that we follow and they discover things, the real world (dining in a restaurant), and then they uncover things.
The good; the setting, it’s a period piece. The locations are great, and the costuming is drab and dreary. The pacing is methodically slow. The dark tone is constant throughout, it’s great. The acting is superb, just wonderful performance from everyone. The movie is also shot like an anime, makes me wonder if that was on purpose. But not like the Matrix or Speed Racer are like an action anime. Never Let Me Go is more similar to Mamoru Oshii’s style, in particular The Sky Crawlers. And not just in the similar themes but with the pacing as well.
The bad; it’s a depressing movie, some people won’t like this. There is no happy ending. I can’t really find anything else to complain about. But one thing’s for sure, this won’t have replay value, haha, but that too may be a good thing.
To sum up, much like Mamoru Oshii’s films Never Let Me Go is thought provoking and methodically slow. It’s a dark movie much like The Road. Very powerful but not a repeat visit. Go see this movie, I see Oscar buzz in the future