Movie Reviews (such as they are)

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

The Libertine

I didn't know much about The Libertine when going into it, other than it being about the life of bawdy poet The Earl of Rochester and that it starred Johnny Depp, who is one of my favourite actors. The tale that unravels is a sorry affair, both in its tragic content and its tragic telling.

Let's start with the positive: the story is fascinating. The lighting choices are interesting. And Johnny Depp puts in a great performance, unrecognizable at times through his later disfigurement.

But there's very little else I can say that is good. The other actors are by and large bad. The scenes in which Depp plays with some of the minor British actors are cut together in such a way that one suspects he was never in the same room with them. And the direction is leaden and amateurish.

One last thing, and it's almost unheard of for me to say this: the most interesting thing about the tale was the love story between Rochester and his wife -- or rather, her love that is undying, despite the odds against it -- and this is woefully undertold.

I would say avoid at all costs, but the story and Depp are big draws. Just be warned...

Acting: 8
Story: 11
Direction: 4
Enjoyment: 10
Involvement: 8
Total: 41

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