“Carol” has all the classic ingredients of an Oscar contender: it’s extremely well directed by Todd Haynes (“Far From Heaven”) with a keen eye for detail, it features Cate Blanchett like you’ve never seen her before (and you’ve seen her in many different roles throughout her colorful career), and more importantly it has an emotional story to tell. I didn’t fall in love with the overall result, but as far as love stories go, this one hits all the right notes. Blanchett plays the title character, an elegant woman in the early 1950s who is in the process of divorcing her husband (Kyle Chandler). He discovered her having an affair with a woman (Sarah Paulson) and yet he isn’t ready to move on and let her go. One day Carol meets a department-store salesgirl (Rooney Mara) and a love story unfolds. The movie arranges a sentimental education for both mismatched lovers (they barely have anything in common), and there’s no denying the collateral damage, especially when Carol risks losing the custody of her young daughter. One thing’s for sure: you won’t forget Blanchett’s haunted eyes. And Rooney Mara is equally impressive; she is a first rate actress with appealing looks. It’s a shame about the tidiness of the film’s wrap up, but otherwise “Carol” will hit you like a shot in the heart.