On his skin, Sophie Barthes’s portrait of Gustave Flaubert Madame Bovary comes to us as a puzzle of Quality – what the modern critics of France call “le cinema du papa.” Immaculate transition seems to have no iron distance or repetition, this first feels like a kind of Bovary you can lose yourself in it – petticoats and all the accessories. (This is the second Madame Bovary The adaptation will open on American shores this month, hot on the heels of the well-produced Anne Fontaine, but at the end of the adaptation. Gemma Bowery, perhaps adding to the past, done that way.) But look closely and you’ll see that this madame lives on in all sorts of ways. At least for its first half, it’s a dark, haunted, highly acclaimed film. Barthes and his co-writer Felipe Marino thought this Emma Bovary – and they confirm that we will work together.
Unlike Flaubert’s novel – and not like Fontaine’s recent expansion – Barthes’s film is closer to Emma’s (Mia Wasikowska) perspective. In the first scenes of the movie, we see her as a young woman who has finished school, learning to be polite, picking apples, etc. She remains silent during her marriage to Charles Bovary (Henry Lloyd-Hughes); We only see her cry as she greets her beloved widowed father (Olivier Gourmet). But, far from removing us from the process, Emma brought us closer to her face. We begin to see and hear the world with childlike fear and wonder; everything is strange and new. On his wedding night, we hear the thwapp-thwapp the strings of Emma’s dress when they parted; the same way the bed creaked the first time she was with Charles.
But as Emma becomes increasingly aware of her lowly position in life – the lowly wife of a country doctor brings with her little of the love, beauty, and passion she expected – he rebelled, at first quietly, then more boldly. She initially rejected her first suitor, Leon Dupuis (a nightmare Ezra Miller), “the last love left in all of France,” but soon fell into the arms of the second, Marquis d. Undervilliers (Logan Marshall Green). Consumed by her passions, and encouraged by the greedy merchant Lhereux (Rhys Ifans), she invests in riches, forcing her husband to try to rise above his status in the alive.
All these things necessary Reduce Emma to love, and, thankfully, Barthes and Wasikowska do not try to impress us with the painful aspects of the character. But for all that love is, this is it Madame Bovary based in reality – in the sounds and colors of Emma’s world, in its rich and beautiful borders. We see the true reality of middle life with Charles Charles – the empty dinners, the dirty air of their home, the clock always ticking in the background. Seen in that light, the little splashes of color that go with Emma’s beautiful clothes seem like little windows to a better life. When the Marquis takes Emma with him on a hunting trip, In a gruesome scene played out in part from the deer’s point of view, Marquis kills the creature with his knife. There is something elemental and irresistible about it, though. We can understand how Emma would be drawn to this kind of power.
It is difficult, of course, to do justice to Flaubert’s work, which was so popular – many have tried bravely, from Jean Renoir to Vincente Minnelli to Claude Chabrol – and the last work can be considered a public and shocking, as Emma struggles with the consequences of all her actions. financial affairs, and spirituality. In these moments, Barthes’ film falls to Earth. But it is also, as it should be. By the time Emma meets her famous fate, the joys and wonders of everything she’s seen and heard seem to have become a distant memory.