I love Jason Robert Brown’s musical of The Last Five Years. A retrospective look back at one couples relationship together after it has ended. The highs, the lows, the successes and the failures and everything in-between. It’s one of those stories that makes you realise that sometimes, people just grow apart, and thats ok.
The 2001 musical was based on the true life events of Jason Robert Browns failed marriage to Theresa O’Neill. The Last Five Years has been performed in and around London many times, most recently at the Greenwich Theatre starring Danielle Hope and Jon Robyns.
The film adaption is due to be released at the Empire cinema in London’s Leicester Square on 17 April before a DVD release on 4 May 2015. The film, starring Anna Kendrick and Jeremy Jordan, has been beautifully brought to the screen by writer/director Richard LaGravenese, who manages to enhance the story of the original musical (often performed with just two actors and no real set) to add depth and colour to the emotions in the songs. The Schmuel Song is a perfect example of how a song can be brought to life visually and it was exciting to watch. Jason Robert Brown’s songs are themselves, short stories and so it is great to see them so well portrayed on screen.
Anna Kendrick and Jeremy Jordan (as Cathy Hiatt and Jamie Wellerstein) are a great pairing for this film, which relies entirely on a cast of two. Their vocal ability is perfect for these songs and (for once) I wasn’t left wishing they has cast actors who can actually do the songs justice (as so many stage to screen adaptions favourite Hollywood actors over strong singers).
Beautiful songs, beautifully brought to life on screen to tell a beautiful story. Go and check it out in cinemas or grab a copy when it comes out on DVD! You might even catch a cheeky cameo appearance from the great Jason Robert Brown himself!
Reviewed by West End Wilma
The Last Five Years is released at the Empire Leicester Square on 17 April, VOD on 1 May and DVD on 4 May 2015. For cinema tickets visit www.L5YTickets.co.uk.