Professor David Kepesh (Ben Kingsley) is the central character in a film where one would expect to see two central characters. This is how you know that 'Elegy' is not a traditional love story. This movie is about how a smart and sensitive man, a university Professor, an amateur musician, and a hedonist, deals with the realities of growing old, and his loss of power over women - the most important thing in his self-acknowledged imperfect life. "Elegy' is about a narcissistic person who is aware of his tragic flaw, but simply chooses not to regard it as such.

Early on, we discover that the Professor is an important person when we observe him being interviewed by Charlie Rose on PBS. David skillfully and effectively leverages his status to meet and seduce attractive young female students. Everything goes swimmingly for David until he meets up with the impossibly beautiful Consuela, a young student of his (played by Penélope Cruz).

Soon after meeting Consuela, David becomes acutely aware of several profound things all at once. His first response is to instantly consider her to be one of the great potential prizes of his entire life. He then becomes aware that she is quite substantial both inside and out, and is likely something more than just another conquest. Simultaneously, he is aware that "as is" he is no longer at the top of his game (as he is 30 years her senior), and if he wants her, he needs to modify his behavior. Adding to all of this is the feeling that he may end up actually falling in loving with her. This mixture of emotions and insecurities puts David in a vulnerable place, and as luck would have it, this is what Consuela finds attractive in him. The remainder of the film is an exotic dance where the sparks fly, and where the ending is unexpected.

| 2008 | 1 hr 48 min | 6.8/10
Isabel Coixet

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