Nelson Mandela, in his first term as the South African President, initiates a unique venture to unite the apartheid-torn land: enlist the national rugby team on a mission to win the 1995 Rugby World Cup.
A drama centered on three people who are haunted by mortality in different ways. George (Matt Damon) is a blue-collar American who has a special connection to the afterlife. On the other side of the world, Marie (Cécile de France), a French journalist, has a near-death experience that shakes her reality. And when Marcus (identical twins Frankie McLaren and George McLaren), a London schoolboy, loses the person closest to him, he desperately needs answers. Each on a path in search of the truth, their lives will intersect, forever changed by what they believe might-or must-exist in the hereafter. Written by
Warner Bros. Pictures
In two scenes: between Marcus and a psychic and between Marcus and his reading by George. See more »
He said, "A life that's all about death is no life at all."
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The mid 80s-late 90's Warner Bros. shield is used and is in black and white at the beginning of the movie, and at the end of the credits, the same Warner Bros. Shield is used alongside the Amblin logo, also in black-and-white. See more »
Near-death experience, blessing or woe, cinematically described in the Peter Morgan scripted, Clint Eastwood directed enjoyable 3-fold poignant story
There's no worry that the film would be heavy due to subject matter. "Hereafter" is a comfortably-paced film experience from veteran director Clint Eastwood (at wondrous prime age of 80). Peter ("The Queen") Morgan's screenplay on 'life after close encounter with death' is seemingly simple yet full of spirited (pardon the pun) ingredients. There are vignettes depicting different social strata of life situations: rich and famous in the French television media and European publishing world as we follow a career-driven female journalist; quietly solo 'blue-collar worker' shying away from exposure of his 'possessed gift' in San Francisco; struggling addict, London single mom dealing with custody of her boys and the lone twin attachment to his lost brother. Morgan skillfully scripted three intersecting story lines inclusive of contemporary social elements and events: natural disaster, bomb attack, fatal accident, culinary classes, corporate meetings, company layoffs, foster care, book fair.
As in most of Eastwood directed films, there's never hurriedness or push for emphasis of themes. We are watching and experiencing at comfortable pace the development of the characters as the stories unfold. The characters, we care. Not just the three main ones, but the supporting roles are just as interesting and touching - fine acting all round. Bryce Dallas Howard as Melanie - sensual-sensory moments at the food tasting segment with Damon reminds me of the flavorful w-d Sandra Nettelbeck's 2001 German gem "Bella Martha". Brief appearance by Marthe Keller as reassuring Dr. Rousseau at the Swiss hospice institute reminds me of her 'terminal' role in d Sydney Pollack's 1977 "Bobby Deerfield" opposite Al Pacino. Derek Jacobi as himself fondly reciting Dickens is always a welcoming interlude.
Matt Damon, second time round collaboration with Eastwood (he was fantastic in his South African Rugby team captain role in Eastwood's 2009 "Invictus" opposite Morgan Freeman), once again delivered a subtly convincing and sensitive George Lonegan, the reluctant psychic who felt trapped by his not so hidden gift. Cécile De France as Marie Lelay let us share her anguish and determined pursuit for true understanding, recognition of her near-death experience. Marcus at such a young age, quite pensive and resolute in his search for connection with his brother, is well-portrayed by the McLaren twins.
Besides being director and producer to "Hereafter," Eastwood is also the composer of the film score. I appreciate the palpable energy and loving care contributed to the accompanying music as the scenes reveal and the stories evolve - the guitar strains and the piano rhythm so aptly integrated to the movie experience.
Along with screenwriter Peter Morgan, Steven Spielberg is one of the executive producers and it was said that he actually introduced the original draft to Eastwood, who promptly bought the rights to the book 'Hereafter.' There's an insightful article titled "Eastwood Breaks Another Mold" (by C. McGrath) which provided background notes to how the script and film came to be. Almost as fate plays a hand and the two important players (Eastwood-Morgan) 'intersect', we are fortunate to get to enjoy the remarkable film production of 'Hereafter': a perceptive study of life after death on the sly, dramatically rewarding.
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