Projections - Movie Reviews
With Jim Sabatini

The Eclipse

Ciarán Hinds, Iben Hjejle, Aidan Quinn, Jim Norton, Eanna Hardwicke

Rated: R 
Reviewed by: Jim  
Release date: March 26, 2010 Released by: Magnolia

This well-mounted low-budgeter has a pretty good handle on its romantic and supernatural elements in a title that coincidentally shares the same (subtitled) name for this summer's third in The Twilight films.

The Eclipse stars Ciaran Hinds, Iben Hjejle and Aidan Quinn, and has a more decidedly older demographic and arthouse potential. It's streamlined convincingly from Billy Roche's short stories.

Like The Boys Are Back, it deals with a widower, Hinds's Michael Farr, a father of two teens trying to get on with his life. A teacher who writes in his spare time, he begins to feel the presence of his late wife in the form of apparitions as he's volunteering his time to help with the County Cork's annual literary festival.

Michael is drawn to a horror writer, Lena, an appealing Hjejle of Defiance and High Fidelity, whom he's transporting as she promotes her titular tome.

Lena is somewhat beholden to married American author Nicholas Holden, amusingly acted by Quinn who has been in fine Irish fare like Michael Collins and This is My Father. The unctuous fellow has his eye on repairing his relationship with Lena and her chances with a vulnerable Michael.

Irishman Conor McPherson uses his theatrical background adroitly enough when it comes to personal damage and things which may go bump in the night. The Eclipse maintains a less than somber mood which inspires and informs the narrative, understanding of its characters and their motivations while not being contrived or gimmicky in any way.

An Irish Hinds and Danish actress Hjejle pair in an ingratiating way as Lena becomes a confidante to the visions which are plaguing Michael. The hamlet of Cobh is so scenic and verdant to make Irish eyes (and its lovers) smiling in a production which is temptingly refreshing.

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The Eclipse        B                  B 

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