Mira Sorvino is adorable in this lovely adaptation of the 17th-century comedy Triumph of Love. When a princess (Sorvino) sets out to return her throne to its rightful heir, the rightful heir turns out to be a handsome youn... more »g man (Jay Rodan). Of course, the princess falls madly in love with him. Unfortunately, he's been trained by his mentor, an angry philosopher (Ben Kingsley), to hate the princess (he even practices archery using her picture as the target). To set things right and win her heart's desire, the princess dresses herself as a man and--switching from one disguise to another--begins wooing everyone in the philosopher's household, starting with his spinster sister (Fiona Shaw). Though the transformation from the stage to the screen is pretty straightforward, the costumes and sets are beautiful. Sorvino holds her own against British stage vets Kingsley and Shaw. --Bret Fetzer« less
"I, frankly, had never heard of this movie, despite the stellar cast and director. My wife brought it home from Blockbuster, and I sat down with low expectations -- here would be yet another stiff period piece, a la Howard's End, I thought. Boy, was I wrong. This risque farce is barrels of sweet fun. I laughed harder than I have in a long time, and just fell for the sweet, sultry performance of Mira Sorvino. She lights up the screen.Bravo!"
Behold the power of cheese!
CodeMaster Talon | Orlando, FL United States | 10/30/2002
(4 out of 5 stars)
"The silly, dopey, and terrifically fun "Triumph of Love" is the latest point on Mira Sorvino's bizarre career trajectory. A sweet treatise on the power of love to transform and enlarge us, the film features gorgeous visuals, sumptuous costumes, and the
hopelessly beautiful Jay Rodan as Sorvino's love interest. The supporting cast includes the always welcome Ben Kingsley as a stoic philosopher, Fiona Shaw as his buttoned down sister, and a stunning European Villa where our story unfolds.The plot concerns the machinations of a young princess (Sorvino), who, anxious to right a family wrong, tracks down the sole survivor of the previously disposed royal family. She finds him, he looks like Rodan, and she crashes head first into love. The problem, though, is this; he has been raised to hate all women in general, and the princess in particular, by his guardians, the aforementioned Kingsley and Shaw. Naturally, then, the only thing for Sorvino to do is soften them both up by making them fall in love with her (while disguised as a boy!). That way, she gets to stay near her prince, while simultaneously wrecking her revenge on them for poisioning his heart. Of course, everything goes completely awry, feelings are hurt, hearts are broken and souls are opened up before love does indeed triumph in the end. The message here is that it does not matter so much who you love as that you open yourself up to the experience, and that even love thwarted carries the rewards of joy and inspiration. It is a beautiful message for a beautiful looking film, and Sorvino in particular simply glows with the idea of it. A well-made movie, perfect for a rainy Saturday afternoon, "The Triumph of Love" is an unexpected treat and well worth seeking out."
How farce will you go?
Lee Armstrong | Winterville, NC United States | 12/13/2002
(4 out of 5 stars)
""Triumph of Love" is a lighthearted romp, a farce, very sweetly presented in this production of Marivaux's 1732 play. Clare Peploe, wife of producer Bernardo Bertolucci, directs this zany cast through its labyrinthine plot. Mira Sorvino is enchanting as the beautiful princess going to great lengths to secure her throne and fall in love. Her maid Hermidas is intelligently played by Rachael Stirling, Diana Rigg's daughter. Ben Kingsley as Hermocrates does a great job of moving from stoic philosopher to melting schoolboy in love. Aunt Petunia -- or excuse me -- Irish actress Fiona Shaw, who may have a hard time overcoming the recognition from her Harry Potter appearances, positively shines as the uptight Leontine who falls for the romantic murmurings of Phocion, who is really the princess disguised as a man. Newcomer Jay Rodan plays Agis whose bare derriere sends the princess' heart aflutter. Completing the cast are Ignazio Oliva as Harlequin and Luis Molteni as Dimas, the two servants who are comically bribed. I didn't quite know what to make of seeing the modern day audience flash in and out of frame or the modern day curtain call at the end. It seemed a bit artsy and jarring for me. But I found the film to be quite endearing and well-performed. Enjoy!"
Excellent Fun Time
paula marie | Calgary, Alberta Canada | 11/05/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I thought Triumph of Love was simply one of the best DVDs I've seen in awhile. The style of the film is unique, and it has many fun twists and playful turns. The cast is outstanding. Very funny, romantic, classic."
Delicious flim-flam - wit and bon mots in 18th century costu
Ingrid Heyn | Melbourne, Australia | 07/01/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Let me begin by saying this. This is not a serious work of intellectual gravity, the rights of the individual, correct social behaviour or the importance of being honest.
It is a comedy of the 18th century, beautifully and comically performed by very able actors indeed. That this made it into film is an unexpected delight for those who love this style, because there is certainly very little that's similar to this material otherwise available!
The plot should be clear enough - previous reviewers have mentioned the details. Put simply, a ravishing young princess is stricken with love at beholding a beautiful young man "as nature intended him". When she realises that this is the prince who is the rightful ruler of the region, who was dispossessed by her own father (and to make things worse, the parents of the rightful prince were, of course, murdered by this same sterling father), she is only momentarily daunted.
The prince is being brought up in isolation by a dedicated philosopher and his scientific sister. The pair are played by the excellent Sir Ben Kingsley and Fiona Shaw, who both understand the element of wicked wit, French farce, a plot full of masked identities and the marvellous sense of fantasy that French comedy of the period conveyed.
Ms Sorvino as the princess is utterly charming, exerting all her wiles as, in order to gain her heart's desire (the love of the usurped prince), she dons masculine garments, flirts with both the sister and the philosopher, and uses her eyes and her ardent eloquence to slay all hearts. It will be no surprise that all ends happily.
For something that is romantic, delightful, funny and wonderfully elegant, sit back with a glass of French champagne and a bowl of bonbons while you enjoy this charming comedy."