Our review of the movie with Natalie Portman

In theaters this Wednesday January 24, 2024, Todd Haynes’ new film, may decemberIt immerses actresses Julianne Moore and Natalie Portman in a sea of ​​evil, frustration and confusion, from which no viewer can come out untouched.

  • Natalie Portman (Elizabeth Berry) and Julianne Moore (Gracie Atherton-Yu) in the film May December by Todd Haynes (2024).


  • Natalie Portman (Elizabeth Berry) and Julianne Moore (Gracie Atherton-Yu) in the film May December by Todd Haynes (2024).


  • Natalie Portman (Elizabeth Berry) and Julianne Moore (Gracie Atherton-Yu) in the film May December by Todd Haynes (2024).


  • Natalie Portman (Elizabeth Berry) and Julianne Moore (Gracie Atherton-Yu) in the film May December by Todd Haynes (2024).


© May December Productions 2022 LLC.

1. A charming acting duo made up of Julianne Moore and Natalie Portman

on the poster of may december, their faces have already merged into one: both opposites and complements, Natalie Portman and Julianne Moore captivate Todd Haynes’ camera, which films almost no scene without the presence of one of them. in the role ofelizabeth berryAn actress who came to study the woman who inspired her future film, Natalie Portman introduces the audience julian moorewhich explains Gracie Atherton-U, The latter is a former teacher who was sentenced to prison for having sex with his 13-year-old student Joe Yu (played as an adult) fifteen years ago. Charles Melton Transformed and amazing), has since become her husband and father to her three children.

Studying the small movements of the character played by Julianne Moore, Natalie Portman adopts her body language and personality – to the extent that she is almost identical to her, wearing the same clothes and make-up as her, adopting the same look and the same body language. Are (furrowing eyebrows, pouting). To hone her role, Elizabeth immerses herself in Gracie’s daily life, exploring its psychological twists and turns and studying her every reaction to a lie, a question, or a simple action. And she seems to be pushing toward the limits of propriety, almost finally identifying with its sordid and controversial history…

  • Julianne Moore (Gracie Atherton-Yu) and Charles Melton (Joe Yu) in the film “May December” by Todd Haynes (2024).


  • Natalie Portman (Elizabeth Berry) and Charles Melton (Joe Yu) in the film “May December” by Todd Haynes (2024).


  • Natalie Portman (Elizabeth Berry) in the film “May December” by Todd Haynes (2024).


  • Natalie Portman (Elizabeth Berry) in the film “May December” by Todd Haynes (2024).


© May December Productions 2022 LLC.

2. The confusing story of the film May December

The story of this new film is carried forward from beginning to end by Julianne Moore and Natalie Portman Todd Haynes I am troubled by his treatment. If the story the director wants to tell is a moral one (inspired by the real story of Mary Kay Letourneau and Vili Fualaau), then the angle from which the director chooses to present it is not so obvious. Sure, the viewer gets to know the ins and outs of the story through the polite and moral eye of Elizabeth (Natalie Portman), but Todd Haynes turns her into a manipulator who is willing to get around and achieve his goals. Uses all means to obtain all possible information. Through case, negotiations and troublesome meetings.

This is where the heart of the film lies, which is no longer interested so much in this social fact that marked the 90s, but in the subsequent consequences for the daily life of the characters, even fifteen years later. Disturbed by Elizabeth and her actions, the audience sticks with Gracie and Joe against all odds, finding themselves in a difficult situation. We can’t really trust these bisexual characters or have full affection for them. A confusing story to say the least, punctuated by disturbing scenes where adults react like angry children, bursting into tears, getting scared… and in the minds of the audience Cause more embarrassment than pity.

  • Natalie Portman (Elizabeth Berry) in the film “May December” by Todd Haynes (2024).


  • Natalie Portman (Elizabeth Berry) in the film “May December” by Todd Haynes (2024).


  • Natalie Portman (Elizabeth Berry) in the film “May December” by Todd Haynes (2024).


  • Natalie Portman (Elizabeth Berry) in the film “May December” by Todd Haynes (2024).


© May December Productions 2022 LLC.

3. The sordid world of director Todd Haynes

From the adorable pair of actresses to its confusing plot, the film may december Thus immersing the viewer in a sordid universe shaped by strange musical compositions and photography. Its original soundtrack, composed by Brazilian composer marcelo zarvoswho rewrites the famous passage for the occasion michael legrand conceived for the film Courier From 1971, it’s punctuated with piercing piano notes that are downright distressing.

Particularly when these mark the beginning or end of a revealing scene or the transition between multiple revelations that disrupt the plot of the story. A musical atmosphere that director Todd Haynes combines with close-ups on the faces of Natalie Portman, Julianne Moore or Charles Melton enhances the dramatic impact of each scene. Another captivating detail: the play of solar or artificial lights contrasts with the film’s dark plot to create a compelling picture.

May/December (2024) by Todd Haynes, with Natalie Portman, Julianne Moore and Charles Melton, currently in theaters.

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