Young nobleman Orlando is commanded by Queen Elizabeth I to stay forever young. Miraculously, he does just that. The film follows him as he moves through several centuries of British ...
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Young nobleman Orlando is commanded by Queen Elizabeth I to stay forever young. Miraculously, he does just that. The film follows him as he moves through several centuries of British history, experiencing a variety of lives and relationships along the way, and even changing sex.Written by
Being a huge fan of Virginia Woolf, I was apprehensive about the film adaptation of the novel, especially one which lends itself so easily to the printed word (it seems natural to accept Orlando's change in gender within the constructs of Woolf's pastiche of the historical novel, mostly due to her presentation of Orlando's personality as outside of social gender constructions).
I was pleasantly surprised! The central performance from Tilda Swinton, seemed tinged with the awkwardness the male form of Orlando has, which, when Orlando becomes a woman, seem resolved.
Structually the film is strong, making the transitions over the four hundred years more solid than the novel's more subtle approach. The film is also stunning visually. Despite a few moments which seem to ground the film very firmly within the early nineties (Jimmy Somerville as an angel...?!) overall the film is an interesting and fulfilling adaptation of an interesting novel.
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