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Suffering from hysteria, Sabina Spielrein is hospitalized under the care of Dr. Carl Jung who has begun using Dr. Sigmund Freud's talking cure with some of his patients. Spielrain's psychological problems are deeply rooted in her childhood and violent father. She is highly intelligent however and hopes to be a doctor, eventually becoming a psychiatrist in her own right. The married Jung and Spielrein eventually become lovers. Jung and Freud develop an almost father-son relationship with Freud seeing the young Jung as his likely successor as the standard-bearer of his beliefs. A deep rift develops between them when Jung diverges from Freud's belief that while psychoanalysis can reveal the cause of psychological problems it cannot cure the patient. Written by
In preparation for his role as Sigmund Freud, Viggo Mortensen read everything he could find on Freud and even visited his actual home (now a museum) in Vienna. In an attempt to capture aspects of Freud's personality, Mortensen smoked his own Danish grandfather's cigars that he kept in his grandfather's personal cigar case over the course of the shoot. See more »
Sabina Spielrein's closing history is incorrect. Her death, along with her 2 daughters, actually occurred in August 1942, not 1941. Their deaths were only 3 among 27,000 in the massacre that occurred in Zmievskaya Balka, Rostov-on-Don, Russia by German forces. See more »
The movie does a good job....at telling you absolutely nothing!
A movie about Carl Jung and Sigmund Freud directed by David Cronenberg? That sounds surprising and interesting, to say the very least but the movie as it turned out, was far from anything interesting to watch.
There are really multiple causes. The first and foremost problem is obviously with its story. And not just only the story in itself but also the things its emphasizes and puts its focus on. It makes some bad choices with this, which makes this movie feel like a very dry and distant one.
The movie is mostly focusing on the 'romance' between Jung and his mental patient, played greatly by Keira Knightley. Nothing wrong with that, if only the romance was anything really romantic or something to feel involved with. It instead just feels wrong and dirty and besides isn't made all that believable. Why, out of all of his patients and opportunities he must have had in his life, does Carl Jung suddenly decide to have an affair with this particular woman? What was so different or intriguing about her? This movie really doesn't give you the answers to any of this.
And if you think that this movie is being one that is sort of showing the rivalry between Freud and Jung and their opposing psychology methods, you are completely wrong. There is never any interesting dynamic between the two of them, which is granted also due to the fact that Viggo Mortensen as Sigmund Freud, is hardly in the movie at all.
And don't know what their methods were and why there are still being used in today's psychoanalysis and why the both of them are being regarded as the two founding fathers of psychoanalysis? Don't expect this movie to show or tell you anything! It really remains on the surface all, as if it was afraid for its own subject and that it might loose some of its viewers with it.
In other words, the movie really isn't telling you anything interesting and it's mostly being an unusual romantic movie, you'll get very little out off.
All a same really, since the movie itself remains well made and acted out. It's a pretty good looking movie, with all of its historical sets and costumes and the actor's play their roles convincingly. It at least still makes the movie watchable but it's barely enough to keep you interested in it.
25 of 38 people found this review helpful.
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