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This is the story of Anna Leonowens, the English schoolteacher who came to Siam in the 1860s to teach the children of King Mongkut. She becomes involved in his affairs, from the tragic plight of a young concubine to trying to forge an alliance with Britain to a war with Burma that is orchestrated by Britain. In the meantime, a subtle romance develops between them. Written by
Louis asks Anna, "Doesn't "Chang See Khao" mean White Elephant?" While "Chang See Khao" does literally translate into "white elephant", the correct term is "Chang Peuak." See more »
She was the first English woman I had ever met. And it seemed to me she knew more about the world than anyone. But it was a world Siam was afraid would consume them. The monsoon winds had whispered her arrival like a coming storm. Some welcomed the rain, but others feared a raging flood. Still she came, unaware of the suspicion that preceded her. But it wasn't until years later, that I began to appreciate how brave she was, and how alone she must have felt. An English woman. The ...
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Jodie Foster delivers yet another spectacular performance as Anna Leonowens, an Englishwoman who is to educate the children of King Mongkut, played by Chow Yun-Fat, who FINALLY delivers a spectacular perform
Anna and the King takes a fascinating story and surrounds it with breathtaking on-location visuals and costumes. The film is about the clashing of two cultures and the way that two very different people overcome those cultural differences and are able to learn a great deal from each other. The destructive effects of Hollywood are virtually nonexistent in this beautifully made picture, and the acting is excellent.
The painful clashing of these two polar opposite cultures is well-portrayed in numerous hardships that are experienced by Anna, the King, the King's children, as well as a number of other characters. The thing that really makes this film stand out is the fact that it is true to reality. Obviously because it is based on a true story, but so was The Perfect Storm. That was a true story that was absolutely demolished by Hollywood. The story in Anna and the King was made even more interesting by the staggering visuals, the beautifully designed costumes, and the excellent acting, rather than the cartoonish excessiveness of films like The Perfect Storm.
One thing that should be noted about Foster's performance is her deftness in playing an English woman. There are only two well-known actresses who can successfully portray characters with different accents than their own. One is Gwyneth Paltrow, and the other is Jodie Foster. These rare and very enviable skills can be seen most clearly in Shakespeare In Love and Anna and the King, respectively. Foster is perfect as the widowed English mother who takes upon herself the task of educating the King's many children.
Every scene in Anna and the King is filled with amazing cinematic technique and beautiful photography. The notable direction added fascinating elements to the already interesting story, and all of the actors involved (even the action veteran Fat) performed wonderfully. Anna and the King is a great drama; it is well-made, well-acted, and beautifully directed. This one shouldn't be missed.
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