The Beguiled (2017)
Critic Consensus: The Beguiled adds just enough extra depth to its source material to set itself apart, and director Sofia Coppola's restrained touch is enlivened by strong performances from the cast.
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Critic Reviews for The Beguiled
Coppola has inverted the old order of sexploitation and Farrell has been reduced to a sex object. He just looks like a very happy one.
A slightly sleazy Clint Eastwood vehicle from 1971, also called The Beguiled, gets an arthouse remake from Sofia Coppola for no discernible reason.
It's stylish, lord knows: Old Colonial sets, a ton of backlighting and mock-liturgical music doing the full Monteverdi. The cast is classy. The script has moments.
It's a strange, twisted tale about the perversion of sexual longing, embellished with psychological power shifts and swiftly changing alliances edged with black humour.
Audience Reviews for The Beguiled
Slow start, but does pick up by the end. Quite a dark little story. Really not a fan of Colin Farrell, though, especially combined with Nicole Kidman here - both kind of washy. It was worth watching, though I think once is enough.
Sofia Coppola gives this reboot a woman's touch in that extra emphasis is given to how the women, after taking in a wounded soldier, all convey in their own ways their desire for desire. Dirty Southern faded opulence at its dirty Southern faded best. All the cast is up to the game as well. This is a pretty damn good retool of the first outing.
Sofia Coppola reworks "The Beguiled" into a densely atmospheric slow-burn; a Southern-Gothic mood piece of expertly ratcheted tension and an absolutely wondrous, ominous sense of place. The technical side of this film is brilliant and is among Coppola's most accomplished works to date. Equally accomplished is the performances which are uniformly excellent. Colin Farrell, Nicole Kidman, and Kirsten Dunst shine alongside a wealth of young performers delivering work well beyond their years. I appreciate how well "The Beguiled" functions as a sort of multifaceted entertainment. I think it fully succeeds as a surface-level yarn (albeit one with an ending that can be met with mutters of "what was the point," which is exactly what happened at my screening) but can also be viewed and interpreted in a myriad ways. Whether you absorb Coppola's film as a feminist allegory, anti-feminist allegory, or any other, it never feels condescending or comes off as anything less than authentic. "The Beguiled" is one of the best films of the year.
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