17 July 2017
Sofia Coppola (Director)
Colin Farrell, Nicole Kidman, Kirsten Dunst
The unexpected arrival of a wounded Union soldier at a girls' school in
Virginia during the American Civil War leads to jealousy and betrayal.
I came to this film having only finished reading the book a few days before. Therefore, the story was still fresh in my mind as I watched. Overall, I thought the casting worked well and all the characters were believable. Those who've read the book will notice that two characters are missing--one completely and one combined with another character--but this didn't have a detrimental effect on the film. I do mourn the loss of a lot of the characters' background information, though, as their personal histories do come to bear on how we interpret their actions. I would have liked to have seen a little more of that woven into the film, not least because it would have added to the oppressive atmosphere which didn't come across quite so well on screen as it did on the page. Nevertheless, this film plays well, with good pacing, excellent performance and beautiful cinematography, and I'm sure it will please those who like a slightly darker edge to their period dramas.