I have a feeling (and no more than that) that I’m not going to be all that wild about seeing Mark Romanek‘s Never Let Me Go a second time. Because, as the Wiki page for Kazuo Ishiguro‘s book makes clear, once the layers have been peeled back and the situation is laid bare, it becomes a piece, essentially, about resignation and doom.

Not so, says a friend who’s seen it. There’s more to it than what has been summarized in this or that forum. It’s not some kind of “aha!” giveaway that comes at the end of the third act.

“If the film is difficult for some people, it’s not because of the movie’s quality, but simply because it deals with issues that most people are uncomfortable with,” he says. “The performances are all fine. And the direction is subtle. It has a modesty. It’s all handled with humanity. The point isn’t to wallow in their tragedy, but to relate their experiences to our own. If you understand that, the film slowly builds its power as it progresses.”