Director: Ritesh Batra
Screenwriter: Nick Payne
Director of Photography: Christopher Ross
Cast: Jim Broadbent, Charlotte Rampling, Joe Alwyn
Synopsis: Troubled by a series of tragic events from his youth, an ageing shopkeeper reconnects with a past flame while searching for a diary which he hopes will reveal the answers to a number of terrible mistakes he made over the course of his life.
The Sense of an Ending Review:
A handsomely written but unrewarding adaptation of an award-winning Julian Barnes novel, “The Sense of an Ending” finds fulfilment in asphyxiating over half a century of misery as an idle scrooge searches for answers by trawling through the steppings of his polluted past. Unveiling the inner workings of a destructive and disconnected life, the movie allows viewers to write their own endings, hinting at implications beyond simple romance before revealing a conclusion that fails to satiate champing observers as they write ten better stories while waiting for the final reveal to provide something worth talking about.
Like a life frittered away before your eyes, “The Sense of an Ending” squanders time and patience on its geriatric plotting as hours spent admiring the view leads to a conclusion that can only impress a tolerant and wistful generation. While retirees beam adoringly at the film’s final musings about the passage of time and manufacture of history, younger and more analytical viewers may struggle to find anything of substance between the lines of its pallid plotting, particularly as its initial McGuffin falls by the wayside to reveal a string of red herrings that amount to very little outside of their initial introductions.
While the writers have the cheek to suggest that the film’s underwhelming revelations are justified by the perspective of its ageing narrator, “The Sense of an Ending” zimmers into its final act before it becomes clear that hollow conclusions about a reckless youth are all that one can expect from a flavourless story about a wasted and disengaged life. Failing to wash with the most cinematically-minded and critical of viewers, the movie makes very few attempts to leap off the page and into the hearts of a new audience as whispy storytelling draws attention to its place as a novel struggling to find its footing at feature length.