Extra half-star for the ending.
"I'm not sorry. And I'll not apologize. And I'd as soon go to Dublin as to hell."
Every so often a film comes along and completely redefines our expectations of what cinema can be. For me, one of these was Barry Lyndon. In September 2015 I caught it on TCM and was transfixed. Never before had I seen a film crafted with such care and precision. Two viewings and 17 months later, my opinion of it has only improved.
The ultimate ballad of unchanging behavior. Kenneth Lonergan is a genius. Didn't think I could possibly love this more than I did the first time, but I do. Maybe I'm a freak, but somehow, despite it's emotionally gutting subject material, this movie doesn't depress me nor get me down. I don't know why. The extent of its realism just shocks me and puts me in a trance. In fact watching this tonight resolved the uneasy feeling I've had for the last couple of days. The script overflows with empathy. Without hesitation, a masterpiece.