When a disgraced former college dean has a romance with a mysterious younger woman haunted by her dark, twisted past, he is forced to confront a shocking fact about his own life that he has kept secret for 50 years.
The Human Stain is the story of Coleman Silk (Hopkins), a classics professor with a terrible secret that is about to shatter his life in a small New England town. When his affair with a young troubled janitor (Kidman) is uncovered, the secret Silk had harbored for over fifty years from his wife, his children and colleague, writer Nathan Zuckerman, fast explodes in a conflagration of devastating consequences. It is Zuckerman who stumbles upon Silk's secret and sets out to reconstruct the unknown biography of this eminent, upright man, esteemed as an educator for nearly all his life, and to understand how this ingeniously contrived life came unraveled. Written by
The Human Stain is a film about an elderly retired middle-class university professor called Coleman (played by Anthony Hopkins) who begins a relationship with a troubled woman (played by Nicole Kidman) who leads a white-trash existence, and the effects it has on both of them. It also has the side plots (but very much intertwined) of the elderly man's friendship with a young writer (character name Zuckerman)and the young woman's ongoing troubles with her ex-husband.
I thought this was a lovely film - Anthony Hopkins is excellent and extremely convincing in this role, as were the characters of Farley (the ex-husband) & Zuckerman. The friendship particularly between Zuckerman and Coleman was extremely warm and charming. However, whilst Nicole Kidman's acting was very good, I remained unconvinced by the character that she played. Aside from this, I found the film extremely engaging and believable.
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