The “Oscar moment” can be a particularly painful experience — an obvious emotional beat that exists purely to show a performer is “Acting” with a capital A — but when it’s as soul-stirring and passionate as the big scene in Kenneth Lonergan’s “Manchester By The Sea,” you have no choice but to dry your eyes and bow down to actors Michelle Williams and Casey Affleck. Entertainment Weekly has exclusively debuted a piece of the film’s climactic encounter, and it’s a small taste of what will surely go down as one of the year’s most emotional film moments.
Lonergan’s third feature after “You Can Count on Me” and “Margaret,” “Manchester By The Sea” stars Affleck as Lee Chandler, a high school janitor who heads back to his New England home in order to take care of his deceased brother’s 16-year-old son (Lucas Hedges in a revelatory performance). But connecting with the grieving child and stepping back into his old smalltime life uncovers both old and new wounds for everyone involved. Michelle Williams co-stars as Lee’s estranged wife.
“We kept putting it off,” Williams told EW of shooting the scene. “It was like walking up to the guillotine or something. There was a lot of anticipation and dread. And then it was over!”
Amazon and Roadside Attractions are set to release the film on November 18. Watch the start of the powerhouse scene below.