6.8/10
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2 user 8 critic

Radiator (2014)

Radiator will have its British Premiere 58th London Film Festival on 15th October 2014 and features the oldest, oddest couple by a very long chalk. It is a darkly comic examination of family life, marriage, age and love.

Director:

Tom Browne

Writers:

Tom Browne (original screenplay), Daniel Cerqueira (original screenplay)
Reviews
6 wins & 7 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Daniel Cerqueira Daniel Cerqueira ... Daniel
Richard Johnson ... Leonard
Gemma Jones ... Maria
Monty Monty ... Captain the Dog
Julia Ford ... Jean
Emma Rydal ... Nurse
Frankie Browne Frankie Browne ... Charlie
Aicha Kossoko Aicha Kossoko ... French Teacher
Adam Beeston Adam Beeston ... Shepherd
Claire Whiteley Claire Whiteley ... Woman in Wine Bar
Lara Havelock Lara Havelock ... Woman in Wine Bar
Genevieve Stevens Genevieve Stevens ... Woman in Wine Bar
Jess Gormley Jess Gormley ... Woman in Wine Bar
Katia Smith Katia Smith ... Schoolgirl 1
Erin Dawson Erin Dawson ... Schoolgirl 2
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Storyline

Daniel receives a call from his elderly mother; his father Leonard, has got stuck on the sofa. He travels to their remote farm to discover that they have fallen over the edge of eccentricity into outright squalor. With a only few days free from work Daniel tries to help but his parents are unable to adapt to their new circumstances. Maria continues with her gloriously impractical style. Leonard uses his professional skills as psychiatrist to thwart Daniel. Maria dies suddenly. Leonard is forced to leave the family home. Daniel returns to London with a freedom that his parents had lost.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

A stunning, beautiful, heartbreaking film. A profound study of how time changes parents into children and children into parents. Full of truth, compassion and dignity

Genres:

Comedy | Drama

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Details

Official Sites:

Film website | Official Blog | See more »

Country:

UK

Language:

English | French

Release Date:

27 November 2015 (UK) See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Turnchapel Films See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Color:

Color
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The film is a fictionalised version of the lives of the parents of director Tom Browne and was shot in their own Cumbrian farmhouse. See more »

Soundtracks

Maria's Piano: Kinderszenen Op15 No.1
By Robert Schumann
Performed by James Longford
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User Reviews

 
I remember so much pleasure
22 April 2015 | by ferguson-6See all my reviews

Greetings again from the darkness. The feature film debut of writer/director Tom Browne might be best suited to live theatre, though it works just fine on the silver screen. So fine in fact, that is was named the Grand Jury winner at the Dallas International Film Festival. On the surface it looks like yet another glimpse at the miseries of aging; however, it doesn't take long before we viewers are entangled in this three-headed web of marriage, family, dominance and the struggles of growing old and losing control.

Fortunately the bleak subject matter is juiced with enough dark comedy that we actually laugh out loud periodically, while other times we manage at a smile for the smattering of sweet moments. Daniel (played by co-writer Daniel Cerqueira) is beckoned to the rural family home by his mother Maria (Gemma Jones) as she finds herself at a loss on how best to deal with Leonard (Richard Johnson), her husband and his dad.

This is a towering performance from Mr. Johnson, and he plays it full hilt as some odd type of tyrannical tragedy. See, Leonard's reign as a force in family and life is now relegated to wallowing in his own sorrow, pain and feces while committed only to lying prone on the sofa and bossing his wife about the house with menial tasks for which he demands perfection. When Daniel arrives, he is taken aback by the squalor and demeanor of his once powerful father. He does what any of us would do … he takes control by ordering a hospital bed, getting dad cleaned up, etc.

As viewers we initially see things through the eyes of Daniel and Maria – on the wrong end of Leonard's demeaning abuse. Somewhere along the way, there is a subtle shift in viewpoint and tone. The roots of love and marriage are revealed to run inordinately deep after so many years. An act of cruelty can somehow be forgotten and life can move on … even after situations that might never survive a shorter-term relationship. This shift is brilliant writing, and at a level we don't typically see in movies.

In fact, the film seems to disprove one of its more poignant lines: "The black moments smother any flicker of light", and instead builds on another: "Just because someone changes, doesn't mean you stop loving them". You will likely recognize all three lead actors, and each of them deliver excellent performances. Despite the subject matter, my takeaway is actually summed up in yet another line from the film … "I remember so much pleasure".


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