Based on the Pulitzer Prize winning novel by Michael Cunningham, this romantic drama tells the respective one-day stories of three women: author Virginia Woolf (Nicole Kidman) in 1923, a Los Angeles housewife (Julianne Moore) in 1951, and a New York City editor (Meryl Streep) in the present day. All three troubled women are linked together by Woolf’s novel, Mrs. Dalloway, and each faces depression, contemplates suicide, and serves as a caretaker for a loved one.
The Hours is Oscar worthy with intense, believable performances by Kidman, Moore and Streep. Major themes are homosexuality and suicide, with Ed Harris playing an AIDS-stricken man who has lost all hope, a lesbian relationship that involves women kissing women, and two characters taking their own lives. The film’s mood is dark and depressing. The acting is tremendous, but The Hours presents a sympathetic and disturbing view of homosexuality and suicide.