The retelling of France's iconic but ill-fated queen, Marie Antoinette. From her betrothal and marriage to Louis XVI at 15 to her reign as queen at 19 and to the end of her reign as queen, and ultimately the fall of Versailles.
Three years into the American Civil War, in 1864, the dilapidated mansion of Miss Martha Farnsworth's Seminary for Young Ladies is still running, occupied by the matriarch, a teacher and five students in Spanish moss-draped Virginia. However, when a young student stumbles upon Corporal John McBurney, a wounded Union deserter on the verge of death, the already frail balance of things will be disrupted, as the hesitant headmistress decides to take him in to heal from his injury. Little by little, as the unwelcome guest arouses an uneasy sexual excitation among the women of the secluded boarding school, it is not before long that they will find themselves competing for the alluring man's favour. Undoubtedly, this handsome devil is a manipulator, nevertheless, will the ladies stay forever beguiled by his charm?Written by
Actually, the girls who used their right hands to hold their forks are correct. No Southerner would hold their forks in the English manner in the left hand. Americans in general use their right hands to hold their forks. See more »
I'm going to try to be very delicate with expressing my following (strong) opinion because it seems like the film has quite a lot of fans on here, but watching The Beguiled was the most surprising film experience I've had in years. I'm surprised anyone would even think of remaking it, I'm even more surprised that someone is Sofia Coppola, and I'm most surprised its gotten favorable reviews and any positive attention whatsoever.
When I watch a film I think is good or successful in some way, I don't necessarily think back to its themes or what it was trying to tell me. I feel it and it doesn't need to be something explicit I check off. But it's definitely noticeable when you feel absolutely nothing for a film. I am utterly at a loss as to what the point of The Beguiled was. What was it trying to say? What were its themes? Jessica Chastain's comment at Cannes must have been directed towards this in particular, because it proves that a film starring several women does not mean it has any feminist themes whatsoever. The Beguiled comes across as very hateful and sexist in general, painting no gender in any positive light and definitely portraying women in a very negative way. It's a period film, sure, but what was its intention? What was it trying to say? Did it really just go over my head? As far as I'm concerned, it's absolute trash. Not only is it problematic, the filmmaking isn't even that good either. There are some nice shots here and there, but much of the cinematography is awkward and unambitious and the editing pretty disjointed. As for the performances? Colin Farrell was pretty terrible in the third act, and while Dunst, Fanning, and Kidman weren't bad, their characters didn't allow them to be anything of note. I am particularly shocked at the buzz for Kidman. She did absolutely nothing of worth.
I'm not asking for a film to be explicit in its themes or character intentions. This film wasn't even ambiguous in any sort of way. The character arcs (if you can call them that) were wholly unsatisfying. 90 minutes later and I still wasn't sure who these people were. More than anything, the film didn't know what it wanted to be. If it wanted to be an art-house drama, it failed. At least had it become an entirely trashy thriller it may have been more enjoyable. The filmmaking is mediocre, the storyline dull, and the implications very problematic.
Since I know there are people who liked it, I really am just wondering if anyone would be kind enough to post why they liked it. What did I miss? How was this film even conceived and remade? What was its point? I haven't been so surprised and disappointed by a film in years, and it's shocking to me that this was made by the same person that made The Virgin Suicides and Lost in Translation. I guess I am more inclined than ever to read its positive reviews. More than wondering how anyone could find it enjoyable and all that (which is a very subjective opinion), I really want to understand how this could be anything other than completely sexist.
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