The Edge of Love is a high priced, finely crafted film drawing upon the tragedies of the London Bombing Blitz during the early part of WWII, while at the same time recounting a portion of the life of famous poet Dylan Thomas. The film makers grace the viewer with a barrage of elegant smiles and seductive charms endowed by none other than the highly fashionable, Ms. Keira Knightly, and her high class antics come freshly augmented and seasoned by the all-out swinging, Ms. Sienna Miller. But aside from watching these two lovely ladies flirt with the camera for nearly two hours, the story underlies the journey of a man gone to war and back as a sidelining distraction to the situation of the famous poet during his attempt to win out in a seeming love triangle.
With the use of clever and witty dialog craftily used early on, the somewhat gloomily filmed movie eventually morphs into a pall of seriousness. A soldier has fallen in love with the red lipped singer only to marry her and then venture off to war. In this regard a slice of the horror of war is brought to the screen in conjunction with scenes of pastoral life at home, where the domestic situation of child rearing and scandalous love-making unfold. Sitting at the helm of such dramatics lies the figure of Dylan Thomas, portrayed here as somewhat of a mild-mannered alpha male with a tinge of lacking in the morality department.
Played by Matthew Rhys, the suave but flagrant Dylan Thomas marches through the world pounding whiskey, sexing women, and touting some of the best poetry ever written, all the while depicting himself as an honorable man. The accuracy is not far from the truth, as the real life poet would tell those he knew, “An alcoholic is someone you don’t like, someone who drinks as much as you.” While we learn of Dylan’s bad behavior in the movie, we fail to learn of the countless hours he wrote and toured, nor do we learn much of his life as a child much less the incidents surrounding his untimely death.
Overall, the movie is a film about love, though one would have to ultimately decide upon where this love is falling, and this would have to be the allure of the story. He loves her, but he is married; the two girls become best friends and sleep together, but he wants them both; a soldier wants to get married and stands third wheel to the triangle, yet the need to mature and grow up surfaces as the necessity to make critical life decisions arise. The film has been crafted by the screenwriter with excellent talent, and research would have to be conducted as to the entirety of the truth lying at its base.
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As for literary heroes, Dylan Thomas stands gargantuan and needs no validation: he was one of the greats. Renowned for his passionate recitals, the man could have written poetry in his sleep; the enhancement of a common phrase came so natural that to engage conversation with him, one would have noticed rarely a misplacement of thought. Unfortunately for people graced with the gift of startling creativity and genius, the fabled story of misfortune seems to go hand in hand with the course of their lives, and the life of Dylan Thomas was no exception.