‘Supernova’ Is A Heartbreaking Tragedy

The Bureau, BBC Films, Quiddity Films, British Film Institute

With absolute grace, Colin Firth and Stanley Tucci portray two middle-age men. Married, in love, and wrestling with the reality that one of them is falling victim to dementia, which is worsening with time.

Supernova is a road movie, in every sense, but with a twist as the prospect of returning home becomes less and less likely. Tusker (Tucci) is losing his memory and his ability to remember and Sam (Firth) is trying to come to terms with this impending fate and the reality that his love will soon be gone. Before it’s too late, though, the couple embark on a trip to visit old spots, see loved ones, and for Sam to give a piano concert — Tusker always loved Sam’s talent to play the piano.

But this is, clearly, a somber occasion. Tusker is at the end of his life and this fact never leaves us as we watch the two interact with each other. It is absolutely heartbreaking and the film, in its entirety, is a tragedy.

Tucci and Firth give us passionate and emotional performances and this story is worth every second and every tear.

Toward the end, Firth, as Sam, gives a short monologue about what he is supposed to do when Tucci’s character is gone. How could he go on? What should he do? Will he be able to carry on when Tusker is no longer able to care for himself and, inevitably, when he passes? This question is answered and it’s surely a similar conversation that many people have had themselves when facing the same struggle.

This is a quietly thoughtful and emotional performance from both actors and it is certain to be a highlight in their careers. It’s also a promising start to 2021 and the year of movies that will follow from here on out.

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