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When we’re listening to music around the house, I will often say “I love this song,” to which my wife will reply “of course you do, this is your playlist.”

So I understand that, as the primary programmer at The Varsity, it may seem obvious for me to say we are playing a movie that I love. But there is only one time each year that I can honestly tell you that we are playing my favorite movie of the year, and “Aftersun” is it.

“Aftersun” is what gets called a “small” movie, which I suppose is accurate in terms of budget, characters and locations. But the ambition of the film is enormous. It tells an entire story of the relationship between a father and daughter through the lens of one remembered vacation, but also begs deep questions about how we remember and how well we can know even our closest loved ones.

If that starts to sound heavy-handed, the magic of “Aftersun” is that it delivers all of that not through dialogue and exposition and monotony, but through absolutely graceful execution of the visual tools of cinema. You are told virtually nothing. But what you see allows you to feel everything.

It’s hard to describe “Aftersun” in words because it’s not some high-concept or thesis paper; it is pure cinema. You have to see it.

— Ben Godar

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