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Original Sin (2001)

R  |   |  Drama, Mystery, Romance  |  3 August 2001 (USA)
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Ratings: 6.0/10 from 42,452 users   Metascore: 33/100
Reviews: 181 user | 91 critic | 24 from

A young man is plunged into a life of subterfuge, deceit and mistaken identity in pursuit of a femme fatale whose heart is never quite within his grasp. Remake of François Truffaut's 1969 film 'Mississippi Mermaid'



(novel), (screenplay)
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Cast overview, first billed only:
Alan Jordan
Colonel Worth
Joan Pringle ...
Cordelia Richards ...
Emily Russell
Jorge Cortés (as Pedro Armendáriz)
Mario Iván Martínez ...
Cuban Priest
Harry Porter ...
Stage Manager
Fernando Torre Laphame ...
Wedding Priest (as Fernando Torre Lapham)
Dressmaker Girl
Lisa Owen ...


When a man selects a mail order bride, he is surprised to see the beauty who appears before him. She alleges that she sent false photos to him to assure that he would love her for what she is and not for her beauty. However, what she is is a con artist, prostitute, and actress, who teams with a fellow actor to steal money from men. What she does not expect is that she falls in love with her new husband and ultimately must decide between him and her sadistic former lover. Contains explicit sex including sadistic acts as Thomas Jane cuts Jolie's back with a knife as part of their lovemaking. Written by John Sacksteder <>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Sono ai no poison. Jinsei wo kuruwase, kokoro made hadaka ni suru [Japan] See more »

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong sexual content and some violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:




| | | |

Release Date:

3 August 2001 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Dancing in the Dark  »

Box Office


$42,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$6,402,741 (USA) (3 August 2001)


$614,343 (Italy) (16 November 2001)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


| (unrated)

Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Michelle Pfeiffer's production company had originally purchased the rights to the novel with the intention that Pfeiffer herself would star. However the actress opted to simply serve as producer on the film. See more »


Vargas puts the gun on the table before drinking the poisoned coffee, but the gun later reappears on his person when he shoots Billy. See more »


[first lines]
Julia: You cannot walk away from love. That was the advertisement in a Baltimore newspaper. And that is how he found her.
See more »


Referenced in Sivaji (2007) See more »


No One
Words by Michael Cristofer
Music by Bunny Andrews (as Bunny Andrews)
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

il Purgatorio

It is unfortunate that American audiences appear to want three things in a film: action, action and more action. Original Sin is a tale of emotion. With beautiful cinematography, wonderful costumery, the plot is rivalled only by Hitchock's Vertigo.

Set in Cuba in the late 19th Century, the story revolves around a man, named Luis Vargas, played by Antonio Bandaras, and the mail-order bride, with whom he falls in love. Vargas, who at the start of the film is marrying for convenience alone, because of his business, finds himself emotionally capsized by the sumptuous Julia Russell, played to the hilt by the fulsome-lipped Angelina Jolie. But when Vargas's new bride suddenly disappears, the businessman discovers that his life is now totally based in her.

Let us go back to Vertigo, the obvious source of this film. In it, Scotty Ferguson, played by James Stewart, is obsessed with Madeleine Elster, played by Kim Novak. When Scotty witnesses Madeleine plummet to her death, his world takes a dismal tern, until he meets Judy Barton, her physical twin. The thing is that Madeleine and Judy are one and the same. Here was Hitchcock's irony of the illusion of Madeleine falling to her death actually gives rise to the demise of Scotty's soul.

In Original Sin, Angelina Jolie plays Eve to Thomas Jane's serpent. Antonio Bandaras is poor Adam, with only one woman in all of the world for him. There is even Lillith, all too quickly dispatched. But forbidden fruit, once swallowed, the loss of Paradise is soon to appear. From my point of view, this is a must see film with intelligence, symbolism and beauty.

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