May December

May December ★★★★½

Shocked this exists. It’s incredible how bombastic the score is, how funny it is and how affecting. It’s really interesting how they take such a heavy topic and explore it both sympathetically and from the outside looking in. Natalie Portman’s phenomenal in this, probably one of my favorite performances from her. Her character is perfect representation of how true crime these days maintains interest in horrific events without empathy. It’s only entertainment and seeing real people as characters for them. 

Julianne Moore is excellent as usual. It’s interesting to see her play such a different character than usual in a Todd Haynes movie but she plays it so well. So hard to stomach the existence of her character. She makes that woman so compelling. But Charles Melton…I really understand why his performance has so much hype.

It’s strange to say but it really does feel like he’s a child who’s trapped in this whole situation. Around his children he adopts this gruff, deeper tone. One you’d get more from movies with dads in them not from actually growing into one. Yet he always seems so hesitant to ever fully delve into this. He’s silent around most of his family restraining himself to small talk and smiles. In a way, this is how a lot of fathers act which makes you question how the male psyche progresses into adult life. Is growing into being solemn natured a symptom of arrested development? A feeble attempt to revert to childlike first day of school social skills in order to preserve your image out of fear? Or maybe that’s how he would’ve ended up. He and us as the viewers in extension will never know. 

But despite the scenes where Charles literally puts bass into his voice he does have a few scenes where his tone shifts. He starts to sound whiny and at the brink of tears (you might’ve seen clips of this). I don’t know how to explain exactly why but it just feels like he’s releasing the energy of tantrums he’s been holding in since he got in this situation in seventh grade. There’s something I can’t even shake from those scenes and I don’t know if I even want to. 

Todd Haynes directing wise is on another level here reaching visual heights you wouldn’t think possibly post Carol. Each performance feels so carefully assembled and composed. There’s even some side characters in this that have parts that will not escape me. This sounds like hyperbole. I’m dead serious. 

The movie is just so moving in a grandiose way and my sole complaint is that it ended. It’s one I can’t wait to rewatch or think about more. I was upset that I was a bit late for it but I’m glad that I have more to see. It’s definitely something I’m anticipating discourse about because this being a Netflix release is kind of perfect. Very funny, very dark, very depressing, I guess it’s very campy but also horrifying.

In the end I’m left with a horrible feeling in the pit of my stomach from seeing Charles Melton have ADULT CHILDREN in a movie that I don’t think many horror movie could replicate. For fucks sake. This might never leave my mind y’all it’s so serious

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