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Separate Lies (2005)
8/10
Double standards that are never discussed
10 June 2006
I wish there were more films about middle aged people. The intellectual journey and the twists and turns of life's moral highway make interesting viewing. There seems to be a different standard of judgement on women who have extra marital affairs than on men. Amy Watson's hurtful and humiliating behaviour towards her husband seems to pass without comment. Reverse the roles and one could expect a torrent of condemnation towards the man. If she found her husband boring and judgmental she could could have told him so, left and waited for a no doubt large financial settlement upon divorce. The country and London scenes are wonderfully authentic and rich while the autumnal weather adds to the melancholy background superbly. The ending is perfect, so in tune with real adult life.
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The White Countess lacks energy
28 May 2006
Ralph Fiennes should never play an American. There is something exquisitely European about Mr Fiennes. Listening to him speak in an American accent with a constant hang dog expression made me feel sleepy and sad. The world weary widower character is getting to be predictable and boring. The dialog reminds one of TV soap operas. As usual the Ivory Merchant screen images are luscious but that alone is not enough to maintain interest for over 2 hours. The film lacked fizz and energy. The cast is solid and Natasha Richardson's Russian Princess role is well drawn but overall the characters don't have enough depth and the information on their history is meager. Overall the White Countess was disappointing.
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