Telling the story of one woman’s fight against breast cancer is never going to be an easy sell to cinema goers, and so it proves with “Ordinary Love”. Directed by northern Irish husband–and-wife team Glenn Leyburn and Lisa Barros D’Sa, “Ordinary Love” feels like a channel 5 midweek movie and is about as interesting as one. That’s not to say that the makers shouldn’t be commended for trying to raise awareness about breast cancer, and they should. The one big problem with “Ordinary Love”, taking aside a wonderful performance from Lesley Manville, is that it’s completely ordinary.

Joan (Lesley Manville) and Tom (Liam Neeson) are a middle aged Belfast couple who are still mourning the death of their daughter. Happy enough in each other’s company the pairs have settled into a bit of a rut, he likes to spend the night in front of the TV drinking beer whilst she likes to read a book, however everything changes when Joan finds a lump on one of her breasts.

The lump inevitably turns out to be cancerous leading to surgery and eventually chemo. As Tom and Joan face up to the battle ahead it begins to take a toll its and cracks start to appear in their relationship. Will Joan survive and if she does will her relationship with Tom ever be the same again?

I imagine that the idea of “Ordinary Love” was to show ordinary people dealing with a life changing moment in their lives. Unfortunately Joan and Tom are just too ordinary to make it enjoyable, they discuss the weekly shopping as they push a shopping trolley around a supermarket, they discuss what colour of refuse bin should go out as she undergoes her chemo. The couple’s life, with the exception of Joan’s illness, is just, unfortunately, too mundane for “Ordinary People” to be an enjoyable watch.


Ordinary Love (12A)

1h 32m

UK Release: 6th December 2019
US Release: 14th February 2020

Ordinary Love - "The Two Of Us" Clip

Ordinary Love - "Story" TV Spot