Taree Film Society begins its 2022-23 subscription season with the movie Benediction (M) this Monday, August 1 at 7pm, at the Manning Valley Visitors Information Centre, Taree North.
Benediction explores the turbulent life of World War I poet Siegfried Sassoon, through the eyes of the revered filmmaker Terence Davies.
Sassoon (Jack Lowden) was a complex man who survived the horrors of fighting in World War I and was decorated for his bravery, but who became a vocal critic of the government's continuation of the war when he returned from service. His poetry was inspired by his experiences on the Western Front and he became one of the leading war poets of the era.
Adored by members of the aristocracy as well as stars of London's literary and stage world, he embarked on affairs with several men as he attempted to come to terms with his homosexuality.
At the same time, broken by the horror of war, he made his life's journey a quest for salvation, trying to find it within the conformity of marriage and religion.
Benediction covers much of Sassoon's wildly varied life and employs a formidable cast. Peter Capaldi portrays him in his later years. Kate Phillips (The Crown, Downton Abbey) plays Sassoon's wife Hester. Calam Lynch (Bridgerton) appears as the outrageous socialite Stephen Tennant, who had a lengthy affair with Sassoon after the war years. Jeremy Irvine takes the role of Ivor Novello, the famed matinee idol - who was also part of Sassoon's glamorous social circle.
His story is one of a troubled man in a fractured world searching for peace and self-acceptance, something which speaks as meaningfully to the modern world as it did then.
Taree Film Society's 2022-23 season subscriptions are $135. See www.tareefilmsociety.org.au or call 0439 903 477. Casual tickets are $15 plus booking fee - search for Taree Film Society on Eventbrite.
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