"The Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby" (2013)
Following the death of their child, Eleanor(Jessica Chastain) leaves her husband, Connor (James McAvoy) and flees to her parents’ suburban home to try to begin again and “find a new version of herself”.
I like the idea behind this movie and I think the characters are quite interesting. The fact that the same story is essentially split into two movies where we get to see Connor’s side of the story, then Eleanor’s side. It’s a very different way of structuring the whole story. They have another film that was released some months later titled "The Disapearance of Eleanor Rigby: Them" but really I don't see the point of watching that if you've already seen the the "Him" and "Her" stories, because it's literally the exact same story, exact same scenes. There is nothing different.
The “Him” version of the story - I did find this quite slow moving. James McAvoy is, as always, fantastic and his American accent is very good. It took me a while to adjust since I wasn’t used to him speaking like that, but it was good! It probably took me a little longer to fall into stride with his character, just because of this and I was distracted, but as usual I slip into his movies very easily. I think it was the dialogue or the manner in which it’s said that gave this film a very slow feel, almost mirroring how the characters themselves were feeling. Just sort of trudging through their lives, and we were trudging and meandering along with them. There’s a lot of silences after one speaks in this movie. I didn’t really like that because to me it felt awkward. I liked how the reason for this dilapidation in their relationship was revealed gradually through the film though, as opposed to up front immediately. I felt sorry for Connor’s character if I’m honest. I felt like he was trying to make some kind of amends and she was just not having it, but at the same time you can understand where she’s coming from too.
The “Her” version of the story – Same as with his side, I found this quite slow moving. But not quite as slow. I felt like more happened in this film. Even though there is a lot less of James McAvoy in this one, I think I preferred it for this reason. Jessica Chastain is a very good actress and plays this role well.
I would say that the order they're watched in is quite important. I would watch "Him" first and then "Her" because I guess to be fair you do find yourself asking a lot of questions watching the "Him" film, all of which are then answered during the "Her" film. So watch them in that order, I think you'll enjoy them more!
Yeah...I can’t say I’d be particularly mad about these movies personally, but I wouldn’t discourage anyone from seeing them either. It might be quite slow moving, but the acting is good, so I would watch them if just for that!