Things have gone well past thinking of ending things in Blackbird, the latest from director Roger Michell.
Lily doesn’t have long no matter what she does. She’s terminally ill, but instead of waiting for an unspecified expiry date she’s set one herself and gathered her family for one last get together. She’s feeling chill about it about the arrangement but the rest of the family has their doubts. They’ve got a stake in this too, of course, with their own unresolved stuff threatening to make this anything but a peaceful send-off.
This setup is a recipe for high drama, which isn’t exactly the fare Michell usually handles. He made his name with romantic comedies like Notting Hill and Morning Glory, but there’s no whiff of romance (or much comedy) in this family ensemble. He’ll have to temper his instinct to make the material more pleasurable to really sell the seriousness of it all, and luckily he’s got a hell of a cast to lean on.
It’s unlikely the combined forces of Susan Sarandon, Kate Winslet, and Sam Neill will let this get too far off course, even if Michell does prove uneasy with the material. Co-starring with those heavy hitters is Mia Wasikowska and Rainn Wilson, who aren’t slouches, either. That makes the ceiling for this movie sky high, and even if things go poorly, it should at least be good fun to see this group play off of each other.
Blackbird is directed by Roger Michell and stars Susan Sarandon, Kate Winslet, and Sam Neill. It will be released in the US on September 18th, 2020. For international release dates, click here.
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