Just when I realized I prefer modern thrillers over period dramas, I ended up watching two period pieces in a week.
The first was Qala, a Hindi film, while the second was Lady Chatterley’s Lover, set in early twentieth-century England.
It is based on D.H. Lawrence’s novel by the same name, which was hailed as a tale ahead of its time. However, Lady Chatterley’s Lover is not the first time a film has been made on the said book.
Before I take you to my review, here’s a crisp synopsis of the movie:
A tottering married life forces Connie into an affair with the gamekeeper on her husband’s country estate. Will their love find a place in the England of the early twentieth century?
Directed by Laure De Clermont-Tonnerre, Lady Chatterley’s Lover stars Emma Corrin (Connie), Jack O’Connell (Oliver), Matthew Duckett (Clifford), and Faye Marsay (Hilda), among others.
What works in favor of Lady Chatterley’s Lover?
There are quite a few facets I liked in the film, and first things first, it has a consumable storyline. You will enjoy the setup and how the surroundings change for the protagonist.
Moreover, witnessing old England might woo you, although the cinematography could have been better.
There are several romantic and steamy scenes in Lady Chatterley’s Lover, which are pertinent because of the book the film is based on.
The lead pair succeeds in presenting love on the screen not just through bodily affection but also through dialogues, chemistry, and bonhomie.
Emma Corrin plays Connie in the film, and she is the central character around whom the story revolves. The actress brilliantly sets in motion a detailed act. Whether her walking style or her expressions, each element carries distinct subtleties.
I have started loving the British accent ever since I watched Peaky Blinders and Jack O’Connell as Oliver in Lady Chatterley’s Lover furthered my love for the language.
In the movie, he does a laudable job presenting a man of authority who is trapped in loneliness. The hidden pain Jack brings along initially sets the perfect ambiance for the viewer.
Matthew Duckett and Faye Marsay are honest in their acts, considering the limited growth opportunity the script gave them. Especially the latter would have shone brighter if she had a lengthier screen presence.
That’s all I could think of laying down the plus points of Lady Chatterley’s Lover. Now, here’s what went wrong with the film.
Times have changed, and if a book from the previous century is to be adapted into a modern film, it must adhere to the viewer’s advanced expectations.
We are regularly being fed stories, so the benchmark is rising. If I was to review Lady Chatterley’s Lover at any time in the twentieth century, I would have hailed it for being ahead of its time.
However, that’s not true today. The story needed many refinements. Whenever a period film is made, the intention behind it is to present the thoughtfulness of an idea.
But unless it is not well packed, keeping the audience in mind, the artwork might not succeed.
Furthermore, Lady Chatterley’s Lover cannot attach to you emotionally. The central premise is romance, so there was a decent scope to lift the sentiments, which doesn’t happen.
For a significant part of the movie, I was emotionally disassociated. Why? Because the plot was loose and clumsy. It couldn’t hold me since the ingredients were bland and the diegesis was mechanical.
Lady Chatterley’s Lover should have had more layers to thrive in 2022. The lack of a gripping narration is the film’s biggest setback.
Should Lady Chatterley’s Lover be watched?
With all due respect to the makers, I feel the film can be avoided if you have already read the novel or have seen a film previously made on it.
On the other hand, considering you are new to the premise of the film, I suggest you read the novel instead of watching Lady Chatterley’s Lover.