Wide Sargasso Sea
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Top Customer Reviews
"The Wide Sargasso Sea" is a brilliant collaboration of a gifted director, John Duigan, a strong, well paced screenplay and actors who are sublimely suited to their roles. Set in 19th century Jamaica,the screenplay transforms a fairly literal story by Jean Rhys into a rich and thrilling drama, which is driven as much by the individual conflicts and misunderstandings as it is by the cultural. "The Wide Sargasso Sea" is one of the few films that successfully combines the erotic with the lyrical;that depicts the complexity of human passion without becoming either literal or pedestrian.
With its lush, exotic setting,it is easy to become enmeshed in the endlessly subtle and colorful aspects of this film from the psychological to the sociological, individual difference to social conventions. But the story of Antoinette and Edward is the story of the delicate and precarious balance between love and knowledge, intimacy and trust, choice and destiny. So that once seeing "The Wide Sargasso Sea", you will have to see it again.
Years later I bought the VHS and found that "The Wide Sargasso Sea" is one of those superb films that stands the test of time. If only, the producers had recorded the soundtrack with music by Stuart Copeland and some wonderfully original, electronic interpretations of classical string quartets. Why didn't they?
John Duigan, who aggressively makes indie films, got the most notoriety of his career out of his adaptation of Jean Rhys' prequel to Jane Eyre. It's a very pretty thing, to be sure, but really-how much can you expect of any film made after the mid-eighties that plays up the casting of Michael York?
Let's face it, the main reason to watch Wide Sargasso Sea is that Antioniette (Karina Lombard, whose biggest role since has been in Kull the Conqueror) and Amelie (Rowena King, most recently seen in Proof of Life), who are battling for the affections of Antoinette's husband Edward (Nathaniel Parker, whose days are occupied making the Inspector Lynley mysteries presently), spend a whole lot of their screen time unclothed. (One wishes the same could be said of Naomi Watts, who has a small part here, but one can't have everything.) The story itself is about as riveting as... well, let's put it this way. It's a prequel to Jane Eyre. They share a certain leisure of plot.
Once Michael York's scenery-chewing is out of the way (he plays Antoinette's father, and is only seen in the scenes where she's young), the film settles down into a nice, quiet lull for the rest of its length. The scenery is beautiful, the bodies are beautiful, it's like Winged Migration with nudity and an attempt at a storyline. ** ½
What makes this film work is the progression of events; madness as depicted by tangleweed, temperature, voodoo/black magic, lust, etc. makes for a tantalizing feature, but none of it would work if the acting wasn't up to par.
Having read "Jane Eyre" a long time ago, I always thought it would be a great idea to create a story based on Rochester's psychotic wife, and how she got that way.
Steamy, superb drama for those of you who like a little subversion in your lives...
Most Recent Customer Reviews
If you ever wondered what happened to Mr. Rochester and his crazy wife from Jane Eyre, this is the book for you! Well written. Very descriptive.Published 4 months ago by Joanna
Reading and loving the book (and this book is one of my favorites), I thought this film was an excellent adaption. Read morePublished 4 months ago by Ada Ardor
I did not like this movie at all. I am so sorry I ordered it. I thought the story was going to be more involved, thought-provoking and suspenseful. Read morePublished 6 months ago by S. Smith
Still holds up today, classic story with good acting and great atmosphere. Sad story, though. Good Martine Beswick performance.Published 7 months ago by InsultinSultan
So so. It was kind of interesting or at least the scenery & a dance scene. It didn't have much substance & was very slow. Expected a bit more.Published 9 months ago by The Purple Bee
It's on the racy side, but a spooky tale. It is well-done. Normally I don't prefer sex and nudity to the extent of this film. Read morePublished 10 months ago by Larue Hardinger
I love this version of the movie. This one had passion and the acting was superb. I think he was a rat bastard for the way he treated her and for his part in turning her mad. Read morePublished 10 months ago by S.Lew