Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|Lady Caroline Lamb|
Sarah Miles stars as the dazzling, mercurial Lady Caroline and Richard Chamberlain is the brilliant, romantic Lord Byron in this lavish retelling of the most notorious cabinet-level sex scandal of the 19th century. Lady C... more »
Think Twice Before You Buy This!
Joseph G. Mac Pherson | Studio City (Los Angeles), CA USA | 01/17/2008
(1 out of 5 stars)
"I regret to say it, but I must: Don't even consider purchasing this film, on the American DVD format. There's a VERY obvious blurred, soft focus fuzziness throughout every frame. Images you know that should be clear and defined, become strangely marred- from the course hewn textured stone walls of a palatial mansion, to the soft elegant fabrics of the costumes. Trees and landscapes appear as watercolors in the rain. Even the faces don't look right, and try as I did to enjoy the movie, I just couldn't. How bad is the uncorrected picture? I stopped it after watching less than 10 minutes.
If you've ever seen MGM, Paramount, Universal, Columbia, Warner Brothers or other studios classic films on DVD, you immediately appreciate the crispness and clarity of the moving images. (Most of the time; MGM did a terrible job on Camille with Greta Garbo, for example.) I wanted so much to enjoy this film, since I didn't see it when it was first released. I was looking forward to watching an Epic in the Grand Style, but instead I saw celluloid as reflected in a puddle of standing water.
I'll have to look into the PAL versions of the film, in hopes that I'll get the movie I want to view. Until then, to spare Amazon shoppers disappointment, I've issued this warning: Think twice before buying this, and then save your money for something you can actually SEE!"
If only he'd cast a better actress...
Trevor Willsmer | London, England | 12/30/2007
(3 out of 5 stars)
"Lady Caroline Lamb isn't nearly as bad as its reputation, but it's still more troubled than any film has a right to be. Making his one and only foray in the director's chair, writer-director Robert Bolt's take on a famous society scandal may take as many liberties with history as Cecil B. De Mille, but he has a good eye for visuals and a good ear for witty dialogue. Sadly, he has little control of either his narrative or his characters. It's hard to tell how much of the film's unevenness is down to the heavy pre-release cutting, but it's easier to see why it fails so often.
No matter how much her off screen antics may have made her seem an ideal choice, Sarah Miles (then Mrs Bolt) delivers a performance of such fearless ineptitude that it is staggering to watch - sometimes painful, often laughable, always wrong in every way imaginable and frequently expressing every emotion as if she was suffering an extremely uncomfortable attack of indigestion. It's as if a monochrome Looney Tunes cartoon version of Samantha Morton had just had a giant rock dropped on her head and was wondering around in a daze, delivering her lines while counting the little birdies circling her head (her big mad scene is worthy of the East Cheam Dramatic Society on a particularly bad day). Bolt must have been very much in love not to see how disastrously she undoes his best efforts here. Margaret Leighton's archly hostile mother-in-law, Ralph Richardson and Laurence Olivier phoning in their performances and even John Mills' bland professionalism cannot help but shine by comparison. As her unfortunate husband, Jon Finch struggles in his poorly defined early scenes but makes the most of his later opportunities, but the film's saving grace comes from a most unlikely source - Richard Chamberlain. His Bad Lord Byron is a remarkable star turn, a prototype sexually ambiguous 70s glam rock star (at one point he even models his vocal delivery on Bowie) revelling in the sexual opportunities his newfound infamy presents. It doesn't hurt that he has the best scenes and knows how to act the matinée idol, either.
But otherwise it's a film of incidental pleasures - Richard Rodney Bennett's superb score and Oswald Morris' excellent widescreen photography chief among them. If only Bolt had cast a real actress...
For those wary of Jef's reputation for poor DVDs, the PAL Australian DVD is in the film's original 2.35:1 widescreen ratio and boasts a good transfer but no extras.
"If you appreciate "Dr. Zhivago," the new "Pride and Prejudi
RareRare | 11/11/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"One of the great romantic films of the 1970's, "Lady Caroline Lamb" was written by Robert Bolt (screenwriter for "Zhivago" and "Lawrence of Arabia") for his then wife Sarah Mills (star of David Lean's misfire "Ryan's Daughter).
This was Bolt's first film to direct and he had a crack production team. The sets and costumes are magnificent. The cinematography gets a little to 1970's mod for me, but then not enough to take away any stars from this review. Besides Mills, Chamberlain (who is terrific as Bad Lord Byron), Margaret Leighton (one of the great actresses of my generation) and Jon Finch, Lord Lawrence Olivier makes a smashing cameo appearance as the Duke of Wellington whose callous treatment of Lady Caroline adds another nail to her coffin.
There's a lot of Viscounti in this film--perhaps not as subtle but still vivid and glowing.
I hope and pray that this DVD is the widescreen format. I have the video which loses its scope in the full screen format.
Oh, yes, the film score by Richard Rodney Bennett is remarkably lush."