A limited if striking exercise from writer-director Todd Haynes, who employs the heightened style of the 1950s suburban melodramas of director Douglas Sirk. Julianne Moore plays a 1957 housewife who enters into a taboo friendship with her black gardener (Dennis Haysbert) just as her marriage is falling apart. The plot – along with the
swooning music and the Technicolor costumes – echoes Sirk’s films, but you can also detect parallels to Haynes’ Safe, starring Moore as a modern homemaker whose alienation expresses itself through debilitating allergies. Far From Heaven is an entertaining curiosity, but a cinematic cul-de-sac on its own terms.