I had no idea what to expect from this film. I watched it because it got good ratings on Rotten Tomatoes and I was in the mood for what I thought was a soppy dramatic film with lots of ‘woe is me’ moments. I didn’t get that, rather what I saw was a romantic love story between two people and the eventual development of their relationship.
I really liked Carey Mulligan in this. She portrayed her character really well, going through the motions as demanded by the role. Bathsheba is a well-rounded character as well. She had her strengths and she was still written with flaws, but her weaknesses did not define her. Rather, it even exemplified her strengths. It wasn’t difficult to root for her happiness.
The men were good in their roles – particularly Matthias Schoenaerts. This was his first movie of his I’ve seen and I liked him here. I’m waiting to watch his film with Tilda Swinton in particular, but might have a go with his other works. Michael Sheen doesn’t seem so out of the element, he seemed perfectly cast in the role. Tom Sturridge though had an interesting, heartbreaking backstory and I liked that it was included here to give him some sort of reason for his motives.
This was a great film and quite underseen, in my opinion. I watched this along with Joe Wright’s Pride & Prejudice (it felt right to pick up the latter film after watching the former). It’s not sappy, and is interesting throughout.
Final Word: I think I liked this a whole lot better because I didn’t know what exactly to expect from it.
Cast: Carey Mulligan, Matthias Shoenaerts, Michael Sheen
Director: Thomas Vinterberg