After being badly burned in a plane crash near the tail-end of World War II, a Hungarian cartographer recalls his tales of adventure, political intrigue, and romance to a Canadian nurse in this Oscar-winning epic.
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The whole thing seemed a bit overblown. All the razzle dazzle of 'Lawrence of Arabia' mixed in with a bit of 'The Singing Detective'. Mom read the book, and told me what really happened in the cave. I said, "I didn't need to know that!"
Anthony Minghella delivered a stunning epic that was on a par with David Lean's greatest works. This is an epic that will break your heart and Ralph Fiennes and Kristen Scott Thomas are electric together. Juliette Binoche is also one of the most beautiful and talented actresses to ever grace the screen.
"The book was better" just doesn't cut it here. It'll probably never be successfully translated to the screen; at least not by Hollywood. Ondaatje's passionate, achingly beautiful prose drew attention to subtleties in people and the world -- this film is overblown, loud and melodramatic.
This film incorporates huge topics(World War,lost and true love, betrayal)fused by the recovering memory of this English Patient.The cinematography was not self aware, but a creative paintbrush on the realistic settings.Potentially confusing, the editing rendered the story into simple moments,creating a successful emotional experience.Stunning performance by Binoche, could have been called "The English Nurse".
Ponderous, with too great a sense of its own worth, this film stalls any emotional connection with its clinically drawn characters in a meticulously staged but dramatically dead narrative. David Lean in aspic.
I recently watched this movie again, after many years since my first viewing. I found it even more powerful. In its unstated way it draws powerful parallels between the ownership of women's bodies and colonialism, together with its message of seeing beyond nationalities. From its strong cast to its haunting music, it captures loss in all its heartbreak and stays with you a long time.