An Open Door (2006)

Yet again, I was sure I had this film pegged from the get go. It’s a wife struggling to hold on to her husband. Of course. It’s heartbreaking and tragic, but that’s life. And then director Jourdan completely and utterly sideswiped me, and I was breath taken. I admit that. What “An Open Door” is is an utterly gut wrenching display of a woman who simply can’t let some things go. It’s going to be very difficult to review this without giving some things away. The surprise plot twist is utterly fantastic and hard to sit through, but what “An Open Door” is is the portrait of the human psyche and its refusal to sometimes admit to certain things.

Jourdan also expresses how utterly horrifying that tendency can be. Michelle is upset and anxious. Her husband is always at work, and seems to have befriended a new co-worker she suspects is his lover or something almost as harmful. Desperate, she wants to preserve the relationship and insists they vacation with their son. Again, I simply can not give anything else away for this film, but I will say Jourdan is a wonderful talent. The production values on “An Open Door” are simply beautiful with a serene and somewhat troubled atmosphere that signals a tragic air from the very opening scene. Jourdan’s film is never what you expect, and it’s evident by the opening which I assumed was symbolism, and was vastly mistaken. Beyond it, we’re given a set of excellent performances that Jourdan uses to their full advantage.

Tim Cunningham is wonderful as the troubled husband who is seeking to keep up with his wife, and attend to her needs while trying to grasp what’s left of their relationship, while Suzanne Lang is a pure talent if I’ve ever seen one. Her performance presents sheer shades of heartbreak and agony while she follows Jourdan’s pattern of slight of hand. At first she’s a wife holding on to her husband who is drifting away from her, and the next she’s this whole other entity.

Her presence is powerful, and her attempts to grasp onto her husband Tom are gripping, not to mention the finale which features the two at their high points, and leaves you with a lump in your throat and a brand new perspective on the themes explored by Jourdan. I was taken with this film, I really was. This is a drama that has everything you’d hope from the genre. Excellent performances, top notch direction, themes the audience will connect with, and a surprise twist that really will burn itself into the collective memories of its audience. I enjoyed this very much.