Monday, December 14, 2015

Children of a Lesser God (1986)

Academy Awards, USA 1987

Best Actress in a Leading Role
Marlee Matlin
Best Picture
Burt Sugarman
Patrick J. Palmer
Best Actor in a Leading Role
William Hurt
Best Actress in a Supporting Role
Piper Laurie
Best Writing, Screenplay Based on Material from Another Medium
Hesper Anderson
Mark Medoff

Paramount Pictures
Directed by Randa Haines
My rating: 3 stars out of 4
(DVD, Paramount)

A speech teacher at a remote school for the deaf falls in love with a beautiful yet reserved employee. Their torrid love affair exposes old emotional wounds and threatens to destroy them both. They separate almost by necessity, before reconciling in the end. Intense, believable performances by William Hurt and Marlee Matlin, as well as a picturesque if dreary backdrop in New Brunswick, Canada, elevate this beyond mere melodrama, though it does occasionally succumb to genre conventions (the ending for example).

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