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Philipe Gastone, a thief, escapes from the dungeon at Aquila, sparking a manhunt. He is nearly captured when Captain Navarre befriends him. Navarre has been hunted by the Bishop's men for two years, ever since he escaped with the Lady Isabeau who the Bishop has lusted after. Navarre and Isabeau have a curse that the Bishop has placed on them that causes Navarre to be a wolf during the night and Isabeau to be a hawk during the day. Navarre insists that Philipe help him re-enter the city to help him kill the heavily guarded Bishop. Written by
John Vogel <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Richard Donner's 'Ladyhawke' tells a fascinating tale of cursed love that separates two lovers like day and night (quite literally). What I loved about this film is that even though it's a wonderful mixture of action, adventure, romance and comedy, it is a simple film. The execution is solid and it shows that Donner and his cast and crew have put a lot of heart in the making of the film.
The score is kind of funny. At times there's a beautiful symphony that expresses the beauty of the settings and then, during the action scenes, there's the typical 80's hip track which brings a smile as it nostalgically reminds me of that wild decade. 'Ladyhawke' is indeed very beautiful to look at. The cinematography is superb as it gives a very spacious view and the composition of the shots are very well arranged.
No CGI has been used and that marvelously stands out as it gives the film a purer look and only reminds one of the days before CGI was overused, when cinema looked pure and authentic. 'Ladyhawke' is a fine example of movies that can look great and sometimes even better and more effective without CGI (other examples being the Star Wars trilogy (80's version), Indiana Jones etc).
The performances are topnotch. A radiant Michelle Pfeiffer completely owns the title role. Her understated performance and quiet yet strong presence (like a hawk) brilliantly contrasts Rutger Hauer's wolfish character. Hauer too does a fine job. An evil Alfred Molino is barely recognizable and Leo McKern wears the menacing look very well. John Wood provides some great comic relief. However, it is Matthew Broderick who stands out. He performs naturally as the vivacious, energetic, deceitful thief who loses his heart to Ladyhawke and at the same time he is determined to reunite the lovers and rescue them from the wrath of the curse.
Overall, 'Ladyhawke' is a beautiful movie that satisfied my filmviewing experience. It gives that nostalgic feel, it amuses, it fascinates and it feels enchanting. No wonder it still feels fresh after more than two decades.
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