Saturday, July 11, 2015

Cake

Jennifer Aniston, Adriana Barraza,
Chris Messina, Sam Worthington,
Felicity Huffman, Anna Kendrick

"Self-forgiveness is a painful path"

The mark of a true artist is her/his ability to adapt to different roles in as many genre as possible. So they won't get typecast in a familiar yet predictable acting style. For Jennifer Aniston, this movie is her opportunity to showcase her dramatic chops and I'd say she passed with flying colors.

Claire Bennett (Jennifer Aniston) is mostly confined to her home (although she does get around through the assistance of her helper) as she suffers from chronic pain brought about by a car crash where she lost her only son.  

Scarred, both physically and more so emotionally, she is mostly bitter yet hilarious in a sarcastic way. She becomes fixated with the suicide of Nina (Anne Kendrick), a woman who was also in her chronic pain support group. As she ingratiates herself into the life of Nina's husband, she re-discovers her joie de vivre which naturally has been missing in her life since her personal tragedy.

We understand that Claire has the right to be bitter, annoyed and alienated everyone in her life. Even though she can be quite irritating, she still draws us into her 'obsession' and we sort of indulge her whim. She is clearly affluent as evidenced by her well furnished abode and she can afford to hire Silvana (Adriana Barraza) a very patient helper whose concern for Claire is genuinely sincere.

The plot is intriguing enough without being too dramatic as we are only given fleeting glimpses of the horrific accident. And this works well in this movie as it avoids going the Lifetime movie of the week route. 

An obviously low budget flick with a believable script buoyed by good direction but surely it is the subtle and poignantly moving performance of Jennifer Aniston which draws us into the life of Claire Bennett.

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