"The Starling", a life lesson

in CineTVlast month


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The Starling is a rarity: a small, character-driven Netflix film that really stands out.

Melissa McCarthy gives perhaps her best performance in a touching, layered turn.

Chris O'Dowd is perfect in the opposite role, that of her troubled husband, and his grief is explored with nuance in the aftermath of tragedy.

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Kevin Kline is amusingly scathing as her therapist, but underneath there is understanding, he is a quirky psychologist turned veterinarian The scenes between the three are gripping.

Gently directed by Theodore Melfi, it's a miniature healing journey in which you deal with loss and learn about life.

Cinematographer John Guleserian has shot the film in an idyllic rural setting that contrasts with the turmoil within.

But the real star is undoubtedly the feathered friend. In comic scenes that steal the form, he offers necessary moments of levity throughout the film.

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At the deeply moving climax, there won't be a dry eye in the room, I assure you. Somehow, it is heartbreaking and affirming.

A resounding portrait of the resilience of the human spirit. The Starling deserves every honour for his quiet mastery. I will return to read his lessons often.