|Index||3 reviews in total|
This film does not break any new ground, but the script and cinematography are solid and satisfying. Not brilliant--just very good. It is about a woman lost in the roles of wife and mother and in search of a greater sense of identity. If nothing else, see this movie for John Lone's performance as the traditional Balinese dancer. He is exotic, mysterious and unobtainable (I am reminded of his role in M. Butterfly). Very remarkable
Now, my understanding is that Jan Sharp (script writer) is Philip Noyce's (director) ex wife. The script must be autobiographical, which is why they are ex's.In the movie, He's a dick, and she finds out so she leaves him to go and live in Bali where she has an affair with a Balinese prince. (mind you there are more Balinese princes than there are Balinese called Wayan). The whole production is such a failure with in fighting between director, writer and producer that they decide to bury it under a different name (previously 'shadows of the peacock') and hope that no one ever finds that it was ever made. Probably a 10BA of the time. All the Bali stuff was shot in Thailand, which was a hoot. A few days after the crew left, the hotel where they were staying (Phuket Merlin Hotel) was blown up by terrorists. This was 1987 so I suppose nothing much changes in the world. Surprisingly, and despite this film, Philip Noyce still goes on to be successful. Not sure what happened to Jan Sharp.
The only thing I really liked about the movie was John Lone's dancing. I was mildly amused by his accent, which for all I know could be a typical Balinese accent, but to me it seemed affected and was merely amusing. The film is set in Phuket, Thailand, as is clearly stated in the story, though Lone's character is indeed supposed to be Balinese. Though I had some sympathy for Wendy Hughes' character, I didn't really care about any of the characters, none of which seemed that well-developed. The local color was adequate rather than inspired. Another commentator mentioned the behind-the-scenes soap opera regarding the writer and the director, which is somewhat interesting, (if true,) but how can we really know, and does it really matter?
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