The tragic life of the poet and soldier Siegfried Sassoon is revisited in Terence Davies’ biopic, which shows him winning the Military Cross for gallantry before fiercely opposing the war. His poetry about the hell of the trenches inspired the young Wilfred Owen, who he befriended; but after the war he endured a long anticlimax of obscurity, disappointment and loneliness. Benediction is an achingly beautiful portrait of the English poet – a film of acute sadness and intense pleasure, blessed with a layered central performance by Lowden, who beautifully captures Sassoon’s quiet dignity.
93% – Rotten Tomatoes
6.7 / 10 – IMDB
“Through Lowden’s thoughtful, tender, quietly charismatic and finally anguished performance, we come to grasp not only Sassoon’s struggles with his sexuality, his art and his destiny, but also the unpredictable evolution of those struggles over time”
“he story of a fellow gay English artist, even one locked away in an earlier era, touches resonant insights and unusual depths of feeling.”