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The Bronte Sisters [Blu-ray] (1979)

Isabelle Huppert , Isabelle Adjani , André Téchiné  |  Unrated |  Blu-ray
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)

List Price: $34.98
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Product Details

  • Actors: Isabelle Huppert, Isabelle Adjani, Marie-France Pisier, Pascal Greggory, Patrick Magee
  • Directors: André Téchiné
  • Writers: Pascal Bonitzer, André Téchiné, Jean Gruault
  • Producers: Alain Sarde
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Blu-ray, NTSC, Subtitled, Widescreen
  • Language: French
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region A/1 (Read more about DVD/Blu-ray formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.66:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: Unrated
  • Studio: Cohen Media Group
  • DVD Release Date: July 30, 2013
  • Run Time: 120 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #43,039 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Editorial Reviews

The rediscovered Classic now fully re-mastered and available for the first time EVER. Three of France s most enduring actresses star in this moody and atmospheric look at the reclusive lives of the Brontë sisters. In a dreary presbytery in Yorkshire, living under the watchful eyes of their aunt and father, a strict Anglican pastor, the sisters write their first works that quickly become literary sensations. Their brother, Branwell, a gifted painter, becomes entangled in a complicated May-December romance that tragically effects everyone in the family.
Bonus Features: 60 Minute Documentary Featurette with Director André Téchiné, Screenwriter Pascal Bonitzer and more, Feature Length Audio Commentary, Trailers.

Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
4.2 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
One of the most significant post-New Wave French filmmakers has been André Téchiné. I've been a huge supporter of his work for several decades now with some of my favorites being 1985's "Rendez-vous," 1994's "Wild Reeds," 2009's "The Girl on the Train" and even 2011's "Unforgettable." I was somewhat surprised, therefore, that I was completely oblivious of his 1979 work "The Brontë Sisters." There is no denying the enduring fascination with the Brontë clan. Who wouldn't want more insight into the family that created these literary giants? But when you cast the fantastic trio of Isabelle Adjani, Isabelle Huppert, and Marie-France Pisier, the film takes on a whole new dimension. What a cast! I was absolutely thrilled to get my hands on this film to see what I had been missing. In this day and age, I'd watch any project that starred just one of these ladies. Putting them together, however, seems an abundance of riches. But for all the star power in his leading ladies, Téchiné seems a bit more focused on their brother Branwell (a terrific Pascal Greggory).

Well made, if largely aloof, "The Brontë Sisters" becomes somewhat of a mixed bag for me. I absolutely loved Greggory and the tale of Branwell. While his arc was certainly vital in relationship to his sisters, I really didn't feel any substantial closeness or even clarity to the women. This biographical drama follows the siblings from an approximate period of 1842 to 1854, from a reclusive upbringing to where the women became publishing phenomena by putting out major works using male pseudonyms. Pisier plays Charlotte (Jane Eyre), Adjani is Emily (Wuthering Heights), and Huppert embodies Anne (Agnes Grey).
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Format:Blu-ray|Verified Purchase

In this version, director André Téchiné uses the structure of the relationship between the three remaining Bronte sisters and their brother Branwell Bronte. This is a convenient device since it allows the use of the famous Branwell painting of his sisters as a powerful visual symbol of the movie and their lives. However, to say this movie is all about Branwell is a little misleading even though he occupies significant run time. In the end, it is still the story of the Bronte sisters within that family context.

THE STORY: The movie picks up with the siblings pretty much all into adulthood and seeking education and employment. The movie does not explain that two older sisters had long since passed away when Branwell was only 8 years old. Charlotte, Emily and Anne are industrious and actively seek out knowledge and experience so they can later establish their own school in Harworth. Branwell is torn between a career in writing and in painting. Early in the movie he creates a painting of he and the three sisters together. We know this painting will later become extremely famous due to the image of the sisters and hangs in the National Portrait Gallery of London. Unfortunately, Branwell's efforts are a little more inconsistent than his sister's and he has difficulty with employment and alcohol. The movie gives us somewhat of a view of each sister's personality and events in their lives that likely influenced each famous novel. It was very interesting to see Emily in particular as she is perhaps the most unique personality of the three.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Masterpiece. April 14, 2014
What a gorgeous film! Unfolding like a series of romantic paintings, THE BRONTE SISTERS captures the period, the flavor and above all the mood of the tortured and tumultuous world that spawned the brooding, intense artistry of Emily, Charlotte and Anne (and, to a much lesser degree, brother Branwell) Bronte who lived, all too briefly, in the first part of the 19th-Century in the northern moors of England.

Starring a trio of France’s most acclaimed actresses, the film offers a keen observation into the lives of this startlingly talented but doomed family.

Of course the story of the Brontes is thoroughly English, and it could be viewed as somewhat presumptuous of a group of French artists to attempt the definitive telling of this gothic tale. Wisely, as stated in the very good hour-long documentary that accompanies the film, this was never the intention. Rather, they set out to capture an impression of the lives of this melancholy family. The definitive treatment of the Bronte siblings was, in this reviewer’s opinion, realized a few years earlier than this film, in 1973, with a British television mini-series entitled The Brontes of Haworth, a brilliant production.

Having said that, the subject matter more than sustains both interpretations. And, given the world-wide appeal of such Bronte-written works as Wuthering Heights and Jane Eyre, a non-English perspective is wholly appropriate and refreshing.

The slow pace of THE BRONTE SISTERS helps to define the world they occupied as well as the family’s world-view. For the most part this approach works wonderfully well. Where it may not succeed is in providing the viewer with sufficient insight into the personalities of the sisters.
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