Another Year (2010) — British
Tom and Gerri are about sixty. They aren't flashy, wealthy, or in particularly good shape. Their London flat is comfortably cluttered, they garden together, and enjoy their thirty-year-old son John. They tease each other with easygoing and self-effacing banter, and know that some day, as Tom puts it, "we'll be history." In short, they exude that elusive quality of an authentic equanimity about life and a genuine happiness with each other. Everyone else in this movie is miserable, but for the empathy and uncritical acceptance bestowed upon them by Tom and Gerri. Mary is a divorced and deeply needy narcissist filled with self-hatred, self-pity, denial and despair. Tom's boyhood friend Ken is a chain smoking alcoholic whose tee shirt reads "less thinking, more drinking." Brother Ronnie is widowed, badly alienated from his son Carl, and has never moved beyond his blue collar existence. Writer and director Mike Leigh has crafted a poignant exploration of aging in the context of marriage and family, and to accentuate the movement of time he marks his film with spring, summer, autumn, and winter.