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Iris, based on the life of revered British writer and philosopher Iris Murdoch, is a story of unlikely yet enduring love. As a young academic, teaching philosophy at Oxford, Murdoch meets and eventually falls in love with fellow professor John Bayley, a man whose awkwardness seems in stark opposition to the spirited self-confidence of his future wife. The story unfolds as snippets of time, seen through Bayley's eyes. He recalls their first encounter over 40 years ago, activities they enjoyed doing together, and Iris' charismatic and individualistic personality. These images portray Murdoch as a vibrant young woman with great intellect and are contrasted with the novelist's later life, after the effects of Alzheimer's disease have ravaged her. Murdoch's great mind deteriorates until she is reduced to a mere vestige of her former self, unable to perform simple tasks and completely reliant on her at times frustrated yet devoted husband. Written by
When Iris and John go to visit Maurice Charlton, a reflection of the camera lighting is seen on the inside of the front door. See more »
Young Iris Murdoch:
Yes, of course, there's something fishy about describing people's feelings. You try hard to be accurate, but as soon as you start to define such and such a feeling, language lets you down. It's really a machine for making falsehoods. When we really speak the truth, words are insufficient. Almost everything except things like "pass the gravy" is a lie of a sort. And that being the case, I shall shut up. Oh, and... pass the gravy.
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How Much is that Doggie in the Window
Composed by Bob Merrill
(c) Golden Bell Songs / Intersong (USA) Inc
By kind permission of Warner / Chappell Music Ltd
Co-publisher John Maset Music & Media See more »
Iris seemed to have all the makings of a great film at the outlook. It is supposed to be of an interesting person and who many consider a genius. The cast seems to amazingly put together and the film is made of a notable director. Yet this film is lacking a lot in many aspects.
Now the acting is the one thing that was not lacking, especially considering the way the rest of the movie went. The performances were the only thing that gave me hope for a fulfilling movie. Especially when it came to that of a prominent couple and a famous well rounded woman. That woman is played by two of the finest actresses; Kate Winslet and Judi Dench play Iris Murdoch at the opposite ends of her life. These casting choices were perfect as well as the choice of Jim Broadbent who plays the role of the older Jim Bayley. These choices are ideal and the film is came some what alive only because of them. They gave depth to their roles were not too much was given and made us feel emotions for characters that didn't come off as too interesting in the film.
Where this film does very much fail is the directing and writing by Ricard Eyre. The pacing of the film is horrible and our view of Iris Murdoch and Jim Bayley is extremely limited. Rather than them coming across as intellectuals, we are simply just told they are that. The story basically surrounds that of Iris Murdoch's battle with Alzheimer's disease and for not really any logical reason the telling of her early life is wasted. If you take Murdoch and Bayley for what they are in the film they come off as desperate and pathetic. Also in the movie their is not enough of a build up towards the end to make us feel anything emotional towards the characters. The film drags on with no climax at all and this movie is only about 90 minutes. This movie was supposed to be a short romance instead of a biopic and that proved to be very costly in a very boring and seemingly pointless film.
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