Yes movie review, Sally Potter, Joan Allen, Simon Abkarian, Sam Neill, Shirley Henderson, Sheila Hancock. Review by Jeffrey M. Anderson
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A scene from 'Yes'
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2 stars
95 minutes | Rated: R
LIMITED: Friday, July 1, 2005
Written & directed by Sally Potter

Starring Joan Allen, Simon Abkarian, Sam Neill, Shirley Henderson, Sheila Hancock, Stephanie Leonidas, Gary Lewis, Samantha Bond, Wil Johnson, Raymond Waring

  • Sally Potter
  • Joan Allen
  • Sam Neill
  • Shirley Henderson

  •  LINKS for this film
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    Cross-cultural romance turned into failed cinematic expreiment by iambiciambic pentameter script in 'Yes'

     by Jeffrey M. Anderson (Combustible Celluloid)

    I usually give Sally Potter a lot of slack; I've enjoyed all three of her feature films so far ("Orlando," "The Tango Lesson" and "The Man Who Cried"), even if I've been alone in doing so. She's an intelligent and sensitive filmmaker who usually establishes breathing room for her deeply felt characters.

    However her latest film, "Yes," is a failed experiment. Joan Allen plays an Irish-born woman stuck in a loveless, childless marriage to a philandering husband (Sam Neill). She meets a Lebanese cook (Simon Abkarian) who was once a surgeon in Beirut, and begins a love affair. Written entirely in verse, "Yes" requires the actors to suffer through long passages of blathering talk, and the scenes routinely dry out long before they end.

    Potter attempts to add layers to the film by hinting at political paranoia and showing scenes through surveillance cameras, but the verse angle nullifies these attempts. The superb Allen is capable of extremes: from icy control to dropping her emotional guard, yet she cannot make this film's rhythms work.

    Shirley Henderson, playing a maid who observes the action and breaks the fourth wall by speaking directly to the camera, shows just how the film might have played. With her silky, slithering delivery, she plays with the words like a snake might toy with a mouse.

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