Based on David Harrower's celebrated play Blackbird, 'Una' stars the Oscar-nominated Rooney Mara and Golden Globe-nominated Ben Mendelsohn, following a young woman's journey to reclaim her past. Fifteen years earlier, teenage Una (Mara) ran away with an older man, Ray (Mendelsohn), a crime for which he was arrested and imprisoned. When she comes across a photo of him in the present, Una tracks him down to his workplace, and her abrupt arrival threatens to destroy Ray's new life - all the while derailing her precarious stability. Unspoken secrets and buried memories surface as Una and Ray sift through the wreckage of the past, confronting unanswered questions and unresolved longings, ultimately shaking them both to the core. 'Una' gazes into the heart of devastation and asks if redemption is possible.
While the acting was convincing and the cinematography was impressive, a challenging issue was rendered dull by a presentation which lacked energy and imagination. Had this been a stage performance the numerous long silences would have put the audience to sleep.
I was not really looking forward to this film after reading the other reviews here, but actually it was better than I thought it would be. I guess it's about expectations. As another person mentioned, it is clearly based on a play, but I thought the flashbacks worked pretty well which is something that always works better in films than in theatre. Mendelsohn and Mara are good actors that give strong enough performances here - RM making a decent fist of a southern English accent too. The script has no award winning emotional speeches of note, but gets the story/atmoshpere across fine and stops short of falling into the cringe territory of many British movies.
Una is by no means a masterpiece and I found the ambient music/noise an unnecessary nuisance - perhaps a bit over-directed (if that's a word) in an attempt to diminish stage-like feel of the piece.
Una deals with a dificult subject matter and the complicated personal issues that arise thereafter, so this isn't a movie for everybody. Riz Ahmed's character didn't really make much sense and was only there as a convenient tool to push the plot along. I would say the film lost it's way a bit in the final 15 minutes, but overall it is a pretty decent watch.