Review: ‘Wide Sargasso Sea’

An exotic and erotic melodrama bearing notable literary pedigrees, Wide Sargasso Sea is an uneven but ultimately engrossing feature. Aussie director John Duigan has filmed British novelist Jean Rhys' novel with stunning location photography in Jamaica and the north of England, but the editing looks like the film was put through a shredder.

An exotic and erotic melodrama bearing notable literary pedigrees, Wide Sargasso Sea is an uneven but ultimately engrossing feature. Aussie director John Duigan has filmed British novelist Jean Rhys’ novel with stunning location photography in Jamaica and the north of England, but the editing looks like the film was put through a shredder.

The initially confusing storyline concerns a mad French woman (Rachel Ward) in Jamaica who marries an Englishman (Michael York). Her daughter (lovely model Karina Lombard) is stuck in a marriage arranged by her uncle to Englishman Edward Rochester (Nathaniel Parker), the brooding hero of Charlotte Bronte’s Jane Eyre.

The couple’s erotic tangles in and out of love are set against a backdrop of superstition in which the local form of voodoo seems to hold each of them in thrall.

Lombard is a hauntingly beautiful heroine well-matched to shirt-ad handsome Parker. Their acting is not really up to some dramatic scenes, particularly those in which they may be operating under the influence of voodoo. Thesping honors go to Claudia Robinson as Lombard’s sharp-tonged black nanny.

Wide Sargasso Sea

Australia

Production

Laughing Kookaburra. Director John Duigan; Producer Jan Sharp; Screenplay Jan Sharp, Carole Angier, John Duigan; Camera Geoff Burton, Gabriel Beristain; Editor Anne Goursaud, Jimmy Sandoval; Music Stewart Copeland; Art Director Franckie D

Crew

(Color) Available on VHS, DVD. Extract of a review from 1993. Running time: 96 MIN.

With

Karina Lombard Nathaniel Parker Rachel Ward Michael York Martine Beswick Claudia Robinson
Want to read more articles like this one? SUBSCRIBE TO VARIETY TODAY.
Post A Comment 0

Leave a Reply

No Comments

Comments are moderated. They may be edited for clarity and reprinting in whole or in part in Variety publications.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

More Film News from Variety

Loading