Nathalie Gressin | Montréal, Québec Canada | 11/04/2000
(3 out of 5 stars)
"Hopkins says in his biography that he can act very well Bill Hooper (a middle-aged bike boy) because he was this character, a divorced father (allowed only limited access to his little son)who takes revenge of women by the story of an other separated father. It's not my favorite movie, Hopkins is very good as usual, he is spectaculer, brilliant, terrific, a smouldering fury. But the story is not very thrilling. It's like a social case. I didn't like the heavy atmosphere, neither the long scenes on bike."
A small and stinging film about the perils of divorce
KerrLines | Baltimore,MD | 11/18/2007
(4 out of 5 stars)
"The 1987 UK film THE GOOD FATHER'S cast and crew reads like a who's who of British Cinema creme de la creme: Mike Newell directed (HARRY POTTER GOBLET OF FIRE,MONA LISA SMILE,AN AWFULLY BIG ADVENTURE);Christopher Hampton screenplay (Oscar for DANGEROUS LIAISONS,QUIET AMERICAN,TOTAL ECLIPSE) and actors such as Anthony Hopkins,Jim Broadbent,Simon Callow,Miriam Margolyes and Stephen Fry.BIG NAMES...but a small an independent film that looks at the complex emotions of couples breaking up and the bitter wars that develop over the children.This is NOT a simple,straightforward story;it is full of very complex emotionally charged material that does not try to give easy answers to these issues;instead Christopher Hampton is willing to simply let the "chips fall where they may" and let "the doodoo hit the fan" in order to show that divorce simply is not cut and dry.People get hurt and often intense misunderstanding and vengeance rears its ugly head.Much of this films narrative is told in small bits of dialogue and terse scenes while exposing the fleeting and transient volatile emotions that each character experiences.In short,Hopkins has left his wife and son.Jim Broadbent's wife has left him and taken his son.Hopkins works out his anger by convincing Broadbent to pursue a nasty custody battle that will discredit his wife and award him custody.Simon Callow and Miriam Margolyes are the two opposing lawyers accusing and defending.All of this is set with the backdrop of the emergence of Margaret Thatcher's English reign on the horizon.Each character DOES reach an epiphany of sorts,but it is enlightenment that will simply take them into the next uncomfortable chapter of life.This film is not a pleasant or enjoyable view.How can it be? It shows life with all of its ugly warts.What you learn, though, is priceless.Sometimes, that's what film intend to be;that is social commentaries on human ugliness!"
Report fron the frontline of the 80's Sex War
D. Clough | London | 07/28/2005
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Christopher Hampton is a superb diagnostician when it comes to the war between the sexes and his scripts (ie. "Treats" or "Les Liaisons Dangereuses") examine the viciousness and the paradoxes of gender relationships like no other. "The Good Father" hinges on just such a paradox (no spoilers here) but it's also a deft picture of where things stood between the sexes in the self-centred 80's. Men are encouraged to identify with the angry hero's sense of outrage over agressive feminism and the absurdities of political correcteness but then the film cleverly changes gear and makes us realise that more is at stake. Not a classic perhaps - or a good date movie - but thought provoking and well acted."