June Again (2021) – Movie Review
5th May 2021 Written by Peter Walkden
The film introduces us to June (Noni Hazlehurst), who has dementia. She currently lives in a special care ward that allows her family to visit and get the care required. We gain a great insight into June’s current life, including a perspective of June’s world as she struggles to keep up with the people around her. However, one morning, she wakes, grabs a crossword puzzle from the local paper and completes it, questioning why she is in the ward. The doctor discovers that June’s dementia has disappeared but feels it will only be for a brief moment. Filled with excitement and eagerness, June decides to escape the dementia ward and find her daughter Ginny (Claudia Karvan) and her son Devon (Stephen Curry).
But as June finds her children, she is surprised at some of the elements of their lives and how dramatically things have changed. June is now more determined than ever to help her children and support the family business. She also begins to seek out an old love interest who may still be alive. June Again is quite a touching film filled with dramatic moments and positive aspects, and heartfelt scenes.
Performances are nothing but brilliant. Noni Hazlehurst was impressive as June. The actress juggles multiple personalities, one moment having dementia, then being a loveable mum, and sometimes a mother that also oversteps the boundaries. Her kids, played by Claudia Karvan and Stephen Curry, were also great and were convincing as brother and sister.
The plot flows at a nice pace and builds to a mysterious third act that was rather satisfying to see unfold. This conclusion of the film is unpredictable and, again, led to heartfelt moments. The film’s soundtrack is lively, and we hear excellent upbeat piano music playing from start to finish. This might seem a small thing to point out, but the music here certainly keeps the film upbeat and delivered a smile onto my face.
While the film is lovely and its pacing is excellent, June Again introduces subplots that aren’t fully resolved. When June sees her children, she raises many issues but only selected family matters are dealt with by the end credits. This could be displeasing to some viewers when they find certain moments don’t have closure.
Overall, June Again is a lovely film. It is an emotional journey filled with many heartfelt moments and a third act that was quite surprising and unpredictable. Performances here are also excellent and were never disappointing. With only a few minor issues regarding subplots that are introduced but not resolved, it’s a tremendous Australian film, and I am grateful I had the opportunity to see it. This is a film that movie lovers could watch once, but June’s journey will stay with you.
June Again (2021) is Available on DVD from August 11th!