That said, I thought **all** the actors were fantastic. Caviezle (sp?), and Pearce were wonderful, Harris was great as usual, and Frain did an exceptionally convincing job as Villefort. Just wish we could have seen more of the lovely and talented Helen McCrory, and the wonderful Freddie Jones. Despite the fact that soooo much was cut from the original story, I was very pleased with this film. The actors were **glorious**--all of them! If you want a film that's just like the book, then be prepared to sit at your local theatre for over 15 hours. Please, my literary purist friends, get a GRIP! What do you expect from a 2 hour version of a novel as excruciatingly long as "The Count of Monte Cristo"?? Maybe y'all should just settle for the mini-series starring the highly over-rated Richard Chamberlin.
Despite his and Lydu's terminal illness, and the prejudices they had to live with, their's is really an uplifting story of undying love, faith, and committment to each other. They lived fuller lives than most of us ever will, experienced truer love than most of us will ever be fortunate enough to have, and realized more of their dreams and goals than most of us could ever hope to. And, Jean did all of this in a life that lasted only 29 years. This movie brings to vivid life the love, losses, tragedies, and triumphs of Jean Vigo and his beautiful wife. It emphasises how important they were to one another.
All in all, this is a true gem of a movie. Beautiful and touching love story, endearing characters through out, excellent and extremely dedicated cast, superbly shot with gorgeous scenery...a film that breaks your heart, but it also lifts you up as well...because of the power of love and the power of believing in one's self. My only complaint is that I would have liked to have seen a bit more of Vigo actually working on his films. They did show this, but more of it would have been very welcome.
Anyway, if you love love stories, or are a fan of Jean Vigo, see this film. You'll adore it.
All the cast was marvelous. Michael Gambon was very credible as LBJ. And, I particularly enjoyed Donald Sutherland, Felicity Huffman, James Frain (I'm a big fan of his), and even Alec Baldwin (whom I usually can't stand). The scene where LBJ intimidates a cowering George Wallace aptly conveys his art of manipulation. And, the scene where Johnson threatens to send a frustrated and resigning Dick Goodwin to Vietnam as a Marine private aptly conveys his habit of scaring the bee-jeebies out of his underlings. I also was especially moved by the scene where the Quaker anti-war protestor burns himself alive in front of McNamara's Pentagon office. I really think this is one of Baldwin's best proformances. I also want to say that I think, for the most part, the Brits (Gambon and Frain) did a fantastic job with their accents (one Texan...one Bostonian).
In short, it was a very well done docu-drama. Frankenheimer did himself proud...and unlike Oliver Stone, he let the facts speak for themselves. It was a timely film, especially in this day of America's New War. And, it was an enlightening history lesson. Heart felt thanks to all envolved.
All the characters are well drawn. All the cast is first-rate..and the story is extremely compelling. I believe Edith Wharton would be very proud.
In short, the story is very well written, and effectively shows both view points. The acting could NOT be better....and the music is simply glorious.
All the actors were fantasic. And, though the script was a bit melodramatic, and often predictable as well as unbelievable...it still worked for me. I was totally won over by Novalee and a town full of wonderfully different characters. I've watched it a half dozen times, and love it as much as the first time I saw it.
If you love romance, great acting, and are a believer in the concept of Karma, you'll love this movie.
It's got a lot going for it. A great cast, though I thought Parker Posey was way over the top in her role as the "grieving widow". Charles Dance was fantastic as always, and James Frain & Natascha McElhone have beautiful chemistry together. I'd love to see them act together again. Their scenes are the most enjoyable in a movie full of enjoyable scenes. Also, it was lotsa fun to get a glimpse into the British Legal system...my, but they do have some strange customs. Though, I did find the black flowing robes and stiff white collars rather appealing :) It was a VERY British movie, with a very British cast, doing extremely British things, and for me, that was another big plus. I love all things British, and oddly enough, Irish as well.
But the biggest plus for me was James Frain. Ever since I saw him in "Where the Heart Is" & "Nothing Personal", I've been a huge fan. It was so delightful to see him in English mode. I've seen him play so many characters from American to Spanish to Irish...but very few with his true native accent.
If you love romance, and witty humor you'll adore this movie.
Also, it is interesting to realise that not every man (or woman) that is supposedly fighting for his country, is really doing *just* that. For example, when Kenny (James Frain) asks Ginger (Ian Hart) why he does "it", Ginger can't come up with a morally acceptable answer. Why? Because Ginger isn't in it for the noble cause of protecting his country or the rights of his fellow Protestants...Ginger is in it for the fun of killing. He's full of blood-lust and it's the perfect job for a guy like him. In a struggle like this there are guys like Liam (John Lynch) who just want to live their daily lives and enjoy their families...guys that see all of the fighting just begats more fighting. There are guys like Kenny that are born leaders full of charisma, and they add fuel to the flames, rather they mean to or not. Also, Kenny genuinely believes in the "cause". He believes what he is doing will make a difference in the future...which is a bit odd 'cause his character seems too intelligent for it all. But, like a lot of other seemingly intelligent men, he is sucked into a gang lifestyle not even realizing it...'til it's too late. Then there is Ginger, a pure psycho who isn't in the fighting for any other reason but for the sheer thrill of it, which in a gangland type war makes him a valued asset, some might argue. However, now, in this film, Ginger has out lasted his worth, and has become a very dangerous loose cannon.
Everything comes to a boiling point, and predictably, the ending is a tragic one. What makes this film worthy is that is shows both sides of this ages old conflict. Being American, I can't begin to fully understand what all struggle is about. But, I do know there has to be a better way.
All in all, a well acted, touching...but troubling film.