“A fictitious love story loosely inspired by the lives of Danish artists Lili Elbe and Gerda Wegener. Lili and Gerda’s marriage and work evolve as they navigate Lili’s groundbreaking journey as a transgender pioneer.”
I remember seeing the trailer for the first time thinking that I got the same feeling watching The Theory of Everything. Both films star Eddie Redmayne, but they are completely different performances from him. I was looking forward to the story and execution of the performances. The entire movie felt like it would be an emotional roller coaster and that was intriguing. This film won’t be for everyone, but that does not mean the film is bad. The subject matter right away will tune people in or out. For me, I was totally invested, okay here we go!
The acting in this film is some of the best I’ve seen all year. The amount of emotion/realism that Redmayne and Alicia Vikander delivered through their characters was unbelievable. I was in awe. I really did not think they would be so damn good, but they were. Redmayne was incredible and Vikander might have been slightly better than him. Redmayne transformed in this role and that’s probably the best part of this film. Their chemistry worked so well and I could never look away from the screen or miss anything they would say because of how captivating they were.
The story is something to remember. It’s incredibly inspirational to not only the transgender community, but our entire society. The story is about Redmayne’s character discovering who he is and embracing that. The true core message in which I interpreted was the importance of identity. I loved that! Seeing Redymanye’s character slowly deteriorating the persona he’s been forced to put on is absolutely beautiful and compelling. Whether he is able to embrace it or not is what kept me engaged with the story.
The rest of the cast was great. Amber Heard was in this film, and she was even good, which was surprising! She didn’t take me out of the film at all. That’s indication of great direction. There were some parts that were slow, but it didn’t make me turn away from the screen because the dialogue and shots were interesting enough.
Throughout The film Vikander’s character would randomly switch back and forth with her support towards her husband with no explanation. One scene she would be estatic and then the next she would be bawling. This was ongoing and I was always unsure of what her standpoint was.
For me, some scenes didn’t make sense and were uneccessary. For example, Redmayne’s character was walking in one scene and two men just decided to fight him. I felt like they put this scene just to give oppression towards his identity, but I didn’t need that. I got plenty of that engagement from his wife, friends, and others.
Overall, I thought this film was great. I really didn’t have any more problems with it or additional thoughts to add. It’s definitely one to watch for the performances, story, and message. I didn’t love it, but I did get many memorable things from it. I would not be surprised if they gave the Oscar to Redmayne once again this year. My rating for this film is 8.5/10!