I’ve been playing a lot of catch up the past few weeks, if you haven’t noticed steady updates on the Reviews page. One of the highlights that I dropped the ball on missing in theatres (blame it on a hectic summer) was I’ll See You in My Dreams. A quiet, unassuming drama about the unexpected new beginnings still available as we age, the film is centered by a subtle and fully realized performance by Blythe Danner. Finally given the chance to carry a movie on her shoulders, Danner reaches deep emotion without showboating and it’s reason in itself to see Dreams. However, the film itself is rich with honesty and unexpected depth for its deceptively light touch.
The title song, written and performed by Keegan DeWitt, comes at the end of the film, a delicate coda on the relationship between Danner’s Carol and her surprising pool-boy buddy played by Martin Starr (who performs the tune in the film). It’s a small capsule of the film’s tone and Carol’s melancholy – but not maudlin – state of being.
With more Top 40 and noteworthy contenders in recent years, the category has the chance to yield more recognizable than we’ve seen since the 80s. We’ll see how that translates to nominations: The Academy’s song branch prefers work that plays part in the respective film’s narrative, and we’ve yet to hear a contender that not only works both in narrative context but also encapsulates the film as a whole. Take a listen below: