Plenty to Like, Plenty to Dislike
One of my all time favorites.
best movie i've ever seen.
I really wanted to like this movie. I feel terribly cynical trashing it, and that's why I'm giving it a middling 5. Actually, I'm giving it a 5 because there were some superb performances.
This film is true to its source novel. And it also tells the uncomfortable truths: the monsters are sometimes not 100% monsters and they can be handsome. Looks like a lot of self-righteous people out there expect Humbert to be a cartoonish character, so they will be disappointed and maybe terrified when they start to sympathize with him while watching this film. And I guess they expect Lolita to be the victim - which she is, it's just that people have this idea of victims as non-threatening, saint-like individuals, void of any sex-appeal. They pretend to think that nymphets don't exist and that they have never seen Brooke Shields. Dominique Swain, what is she then? Well, I can tell you she is a perfectly cast nymphet. Jeremy Irons - I had a HUGE crush on him when Lolita came out and I just turned 18. I fell for him when I watched Damage (1992) and was just 13. It just happens sometimes that a minor falls for an older person. These things may be illegal, immoral or sick, but Lolita is not only true to the source novel, it's also true to the human nature. The director doesn't moralize, which I like. He just puts this story in front of us, taking great care of the visual elements that make the film. And everything is perfect, the acting, the costumes, the music, the dreamy photography, the editing, the camera movement... I think Lolita would have won some Oscars, had it been given a chance. Dominique Swain deserved much, much more. She is wonderfully talented. And Jeremy has always been one of those brave actors, not only in terms of choosing his parts, but also the way he somehow reveals himself in these parts. Even Melanie Griffith shines here as Lolita's obnoxious mother. Here's another awful truth: abused kids are often neglected by their mothers. Frank Langella as Clare Quilty, Humbert's nemesis, always in the shadow, is what the viewers expect Humbert to be in order to satisfy their PC demands, but he never becomes that monstrous. So, I guess this film was too much for too many people when it was released. I will always cherish it. I love it when mediocre people get upset by true art.
Having read the book and seen the movie several times now, I can assure you that if you've only watched the movie you'll have seen about 40% of what happens in the book. I'm not saying the movie is bad, it's actually quite good considering. But if you really like the movie and knows it's about a classic, if you know that much, you REALLY should read the book. As for the movie, apart from all the stuff you don't see in the book, like the comments and views of America by the main character(Humbert Humbert), also the general lust is a lot deeper in the book than it is depicted in the movie. I would say that this movie tries hard to put on the screen, fit into a little over 2 hours, the most they could have considering the amount of stuff in the book.As for the acting, it is spot on! All of the main actors and even the secondary ones are simply great! What can I say that hasn't been said about Jeremy Irons?? He's simply perfect as Humbert. Dominique Swain was chosen out of 2500 girls!! She's amazing, although if I might be so bold as to point out a miss in the movie about Lolita(Swain), it's that when she shot it, she was 15, not 12 like the real Lolita for obvious reasons, and she wasn't 1,47m(5 feet) tall like in the book, but rather about 1,69m(5'7'') tall.All of the above is for you who wants to know everything about this classic but hasn't for some reason, to read the book. I beg you to read the book. If you love reading like I do, and if you like this story like I do, please, do yourself a favor and read the book.
The director has done several well-known obsessively sexual films. In my view, his genius may lay within his sharp sense of subtle differences between normal and twisted affections.Pedophiles don't see adolescents are immature or silly whom other might not care socializing with. They see them as their peers. A lot of adolescent teenagers already have grown adult figures which might intensify sexual fantasies to them. It's complicated to explain why they are not attracted to adults instead. Partially, they want to control their objects of affections. This movie indeed showed those vital characters.Some scenarios were far-fetched in the story like the playwright's role and mother's death. However, they were faithful to the novel. Jeremy Irons played a very convincing Humbert who covered all the flaws in the story. I could see why this movie was censored at that time. I saw 1962 version also. It was less visual flirtations which did not stir too much alerts in the society back then. Somehow, theaters worried about being paralyzed by controversies now than then. Nonetheless, I am glad I found this movie now.
Here was another remake, I enjoyed more than the original, this one would of really come well across the big screen. Perfectly filling the boots of the Lol real here, Swain is one hell of an acting revelation. She can act, but also as proved in this, can act younger than she looks. She's the whole package of Lolita: cheeky, innocent, flirtatious, and soon to be manipulated and corrupted, by a playwright/pedoarse, (Langella, hauntingly evil) who's a bad turn of fate upon Irons in the finale. Swain is up against some stiff acting competition, like her older lover, Irons, her strict and selfish mother, Griffith, really impressive, and of course Langella as I mentioned before, who cringes like a toad, for his sins, in the finale which I really liked. This time around, Lolita has been done more visually, with more plotting and life poured into it's characters, sorry Stanley, although that vivid sunbaking scene, to whet your whistle, I never got out of my head. It was easy to see, the controversy that burst out from the public, accusing it of promoting pedophilia, where there was one or two scenes with our leads stark, making love, that actually bordered on crossing that line. Adrian Lynne, of course renowned for that 86 hit, Nine And A Half Weeks (god that was a long time ago) has done us proud here, or remade us proud here. A must definitely watch: of course it's main reason, fresh new acting find, Swain.