Vanity Fair

One of the previews for Vanity Fair called it "the most romantic movie of the year." I just can't agree with that. In fact, I found it decidedly unromantic. The acting was all fine--in fact, it was kind of nice to see Rhys Ifans doing something different from his usual stuff--but I just didn't like the story very much. Almost none of the characters are what you would describe as "sympathetic," especially the protagonist, Becky Sharp. The film doesn't seem to make up it's mind on Becky, who is played by Reese Witherspoon. On the one hand, she's charming, vivacious, and witty. On the other hand, she's conniving and selfish and her only goal in life is to climb to a higher social station. To be fair, this ambivalence may not be entirely the film's fault; I understand that Thackeray's novel has much the same problem. Either way, it adds up to a story that I just couldn't get into.

Viewed: 9/4/2004 | Released: 8/31/2004 | Score: C

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