Hereafter - A load of sentimental hogwash despite strong Matt Damon performance (2 stars)

Hereafter - A load of sentimental hogwash despite strong Matt Damon performance

Clint Eastwood-directed, Peter Morgan-written intertwining tale

(12A) 129min

Matt Damon brings his earnest charm to bear as George Lonegan, a shy medium whose gift for contacting the dead destroys any chance of romance. After his relationship flops with Melanie (Bryce Dallas Howard) and he’s made redundant from his job as a fork-lift truck driver, Lonegan heads to London to indulge his love of Charles Dickens, but a chance encounter at a Derek Jacobi book signing provides him with a reason to use his special powers.

Directed by Clint Eastwood and written by Peter Morgan (The Queen, The Damned United), Hereafter intertwines Lonegan’s quest for love with two other stories. One is about a tough French TV journalist (Cecile De France) who, since surviving a tsunami, has an interest in the afterlife. The other is about a British schoolboy (Frankie McLaren) whose recently deceased twin brother steps in to save him from a tube bombing. The utilisation of real-life catastrophes in Peter Morgan’s script sits uneasily with the soppy moonbeams of the central theme, which is treated with surprisingly wide-eyed seriousness by Eastwood. Damon’s nicely understated performance is Hereafter’s only strength, otherwise it’s just a load of sentimental hogwash.

General release, Fri 28 Jan.


  • 2 stars
  • 2010
  • US
  • 12a
  • Directed by: Clint Eastwood
  • Written by: Peter Morgan
  • Cast: Matt Damon, Cécile de France, Frankie McLaren

Damon gives an understated performance as shy medium George Lonegan, whose gift seems to be sabotaging his chances at human happiness until he moves to London and a chance encounter at a book signing opens up an opportunity for him to use his powers for good. Uncomfortable and over-sentimental.

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