15A119 min

Director: Todd Haynes Starring:Cate Blanchett, Rooney Mara, Cory Michael Smith Released:Wed 20 Dec 2023


Todd Haynes (Far From Heaven, May December) was the perfect director to bring Patricia Highsmith’s novel, The Price of Salt, a story of secret love, against a backdrop of 1950s glamour, to the big screen.

Shopping for a Christmas present in a Manhattan department store, well-to-do housewife Carol (Cate Blanchett) meets shop girl Therese (Rooney Mara) and leaves her expensive gloves behind at the counter, giving both women a perfect excuse to meet for lunch. Their attraction is undeniable from the beginning, but so are the obstacles in the path of this burgeoning romance. Carol’s divorce from Harge (Kyle Chandler) hasn’t been finalised, yet she still suggests that Therese spend the holiday with her in the family home. For Therese, a woman in her early 20s, Carol represents sophistication, excitement and mystery. But as their relationship develops it becomes clear that Carol’s life is far from perfect, with heartbreak ever present.

Living in a conservative society where same sex relationships were very much still taboo, Carol’s controlled exterior masks loneliness and sadness, as well a steely determination not to compromise her heart – it is one of Blanchett’s best ever performances. With a score by Carter Burwell, Super 16 photography by Ed Lachman and Sandy Powell’s incredible costumes, Carol is the whole package and a beloved Light House Christmas classic.

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