Saturday, May 28, 2011

The English Patient

Anthony Minghella, 1996 (8.8*)
Best Picture (AA)
Best Picture (BAA)
Memorial Day War-a-thon Film #8
A man is badly burned in a military hospital, and being taken care of by a beautiful young nurse, Juliette Binoche in an Oscar®-winning performance. We are told the story of Count Almásy in flashbacks from the present, a Hungarian mapmaker for the Royal Geographical Society, in their employ to chart the vast Saharan desert. He becomes involved in a tale of romance and intrigue, as he gets involved in an adulterous affair with Kirsten Scott Thomas with the backdrop of war looming, which leads to his present situation in the hospital. Colin Firth ably plays her cheated husband.

One of the more celebrated romances ever, it's in the awards realm of Gone With the Wind, twice as many as Casablanca. However, the two leads in this film, Ralph Fiennes and Kirsten Scott-Thomas, aren't quite superstar caliber yet nevertheless turn in career-best performances. The film is capably carried by the superb craftmanship of all the other arts, cinematography, sound, and editing in particular.

Some may find this a little soapy, because it is ultimately two romances, the Count's tale, and Binoche's nurse and a handsome, young Indian bomb squad officer, played by Naveen Andrews, which actually seems more real than the Count's romance, which may be fable. It's heavier on character and relationship development, so it will be slow for some wanting an action war film; it's not one of those, but it does have all the elements of classic war adventure as well. It's a bit reminiscent of David Lean, which is a good thing.

50 awards, including 9 Oscars® (picture, director), and 5 Baftas (best film) - out of 87 nominations.

Interesting that it's Oscar® losses were lead actor (Fiennes, lost to Geoffrey Rush for Shine), actress (Thomas, who lost to Frances McDormand for Fargo), and screenplay.


About Me

My photo
Artist, photographer, composer, author, blogger, metaphysician, herbalist

About This Blog

This is our new template: ProBlogger.

These are the individual film reviews of what I'm considering the best 1000 dvds available, whether they are films, miniseries, or live concerts. Rather than rush out all 1000 at once, I'm doing them over time to allow inclusion of new releases - in fact, 2008 has the most of any year so far, 30 titles in all; that was a very good year for films, one of the best ever.

Author at EZines

  © Blogger templates ProBlogger Template by 2008

Back to TOP