British director Michael Winterbottom is one of the most prolific filmmakers working today, completing at least one feature film annually over the past fifteen years. Winterbottom teams up with previous collaborators John Simm and Shirley Henderson in this family drama which examines the relationships between an imprisoned man and his wife and young children.
Winterbottom's latest feature 'Everyday' has had a far great gestation period than his other efforts, filming over a five year period to create a more realistic drama. The film is something of a reunion of the 1999 Palme D'or nominated 'Wonderland' - Simm, Henderson and screenwriter Laurence Coriat ('Hunky Dory') return to Winterbottom's side once more.
The ensemble have crafted an intimate story of a family dealing with difficult circumstances. Karen (Shirley Henderson) is a mother of four children, who she looks after while working at a local pub. Her husband and the father of the children, Ian (John Simm) is in prison for a crime that is never quite made clear. We follow the family dynamic over the course of several years as they try to come to terms with their situation.
Much like the nature of Ian's crime, nothing ever seems quite clear in 'Everyday'. It's subtle to far too great an extent, and perhaps tries to make up for this overly quiet sense of drama through Michael Nyman's repetitive, overpowering score. Occasionally, beautiful landscaped visuals are complemented by Nyman's music but these occurrences are all too rare.
The extensive filming period gives the viewer a better sense of the passing time as Ian's children grow up without their father but the idea works better in theory than in execution. Sadly, 'Everyday' is Michael Winterbottom far from his best. An all too uneventful offering, that fails to connect emotionally with its viewers.
'Everyday' screened at the 56th BFI London Film Festival. The film is scheduled to premiere on Channel 4 this Autumn.