In the 17th century Massachusetts, a married women, whose husband is missing, has a child with the local pastor. The puritanical residents of her town condemn her to carry the Scarlet Letter of shame. Then the husband shows up.
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In 1666 in the Massachusetts Bay colony, Puritans and Algonquian have an uneasy truce. Hester arrives from England, seeking independence. Awaiting her husband, she establishes independence, fixing up a house, befriending Quakers and other outsiders. Passion draws her to a young pastor. He feels the same; when they learn her husband has probably died at the hands of Indians, they consummate their love. A child is born, and on the day Hester is publicly humiliated and made to wear a scarlet letter, her husband appears after a year with Indians. Calling himself Chillingworth, he seeks revenge, searching out Hester's lover and stirring fears of witchcraft. Will his murderous plot succeed? Written by
(Based on Samuel Barber's "Adagio for Strings")
Performed by Robert Shaw and the Robert Shaw Festival Singers
(Adm. by G. Schirmen Inc. (ASCAP))
Courtesy of Telarc International Corporation See more »
Entertaining, sensuous and beautifully lensed film.
I am an English major and have to say, yes, the book was better and this film is not equal but by itself as a "freely adapted" version it too has merit. It has a beautiful score by excellent film composer John Barry, superb acting by both Gary Oldman and Demi Moore (as a woman way ahead of her time) and even excellent supporting cast. It is beautifully filmed and on its own - is a rare romantic treat that would be great in a double feature with say "THE LAST OF THE MOHICANS" w/ Daniel Day Lewis. Oldman is terrific...his best role I believe. The only distraction....the always wonderful Robert Duvall as a madman...who starts to stray this film toward THE CRUCIBLE area of witchcraft.
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