Deeply [2000]

Truly Madly Deeply is an intelligent, moving, and deeply funny story about love and death. Nina (Juliet Stevenson), a scatterbrained professional translator, has lost the love of her life, Jamie (Die Hard's Alan Rickman). As her life (and her flat) slowly falls to pieces, she's inundated by an endless stream of repair men and eligible suitors. But rather than go on with life, Nina dwells on her dead love, slumped at her piano, endlessly playing half of a Bach duet. Then, in a truly magical sequence, his cello suddenly joins her melody ... and Jamie's back from the dead. At first it's bliss. (Think of the superficially similar blockbuster Ghost--only with real people instead of pretty faces Demi Moore and Patrick Swayze.) But Nina gradually realizes it's a thoroughly real Jamie who's back, complete with every annoying, argumentative fault she'd conveniently forgotten. (He might be dead, he explains, but he still attends political meetings.) Moreover, he has to hide whenever any of the living are around. And he's constantly ice-cold. And he invites his dead pals to her place at all hours. What's a living woman to do? Director Anthony Minghella went on to create the melodramatic period piece The English Patient--but in this film, he shows a far more sensitive, subtle touch. The photography is brilliant, capturing the simple beauties of suburban London. And the wonderfully acted characters, quirky and all too real, will keep you laughing--and always guessing what will happen next. --Grant Balfour

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