Director of The Father, Florian Zeller, produces another in-depth psychological study of a modern family in crisis. Realistic and phenomenally played by an all-star cast (Hugh Jackman, Laura Dern, Anthony Hopkins) The Son is an extraordinary cinematic encounter with anger, guilt and unconditional love in the background.
Lacking any of the puzzle box magic that allowed Zeller’s previous film to rescue profound traces of humanity from the massacre of its mental illness, “The Son” offers a stiff and straightforward family portrait that emphasizes the senselessness of depression through the simplicity of its plot. Is it an unusually honest portrayal of parental helplessness in the face of a devastatingly cruel disease, one that may provide some measure of solace to people who’ve been cursed to live with unfathomable guilt over something they had little power to prevent? Some major contrivances and a complete lack of medication notwithstanding, I fear that it is.
Florian Zeller was born in Paris. His third novel, Fascination of Evil (2004), won France’s Prix Interallié. His many plays include The Mother (2010); The Father (2012); The Truth (2017), which won an Olivier Award for best comedy; The Height of the Storm (2018); and The Son (2019). His own adaptation of The Father (2020), co-written with Christopher Hampton, marked his feature directorial debut and won the Academy Award for Best Adapted Screenplay. The Son (2022) is his latest film.
2020 Ojciec / The Father
2022 Syn / The Son