29 January 2008 | kimberly_ann
I'm not sure how this movie could get a bad review. Of course, there are those people who find its pace too slow. However, one must realize that this is a period drama; it's not meant to be an action-packed suspense thriller. Everything is subtle, but it is so beautifully prepared, thought out, and executed by all.
1. Were it for nothing else, the technical aspects of this film would have kept me watching until the very end. The music was perfectly placed to rise and fall with the internal emotions of the characters - especially Lily and Lawrence - and to express the turmoil of the social downfall of Lily. On top of that, you have phenomenal costumes and set with the most lavish colors. Lastly, and possibly what I found most fascinating about the film, was the lighting. it always seemed just bright enough or just dark enough to reflect the romance or dreariness. In addition, there is just not denying that the way the light fell upon Gillian Anderson in every, single scene is something I have never seen before.
2. The all-star cast! Gillian Anderson. Eric Stolz. Laura Linney. Anthony LaPaglia. Dan Akroyd. Do I have to go on? I can almost guarantee that you'll find yourself, at one point or another, yelling at the screen. These characters are so manipulative and deceitful and malicious. And Lily is so naive and just won't accept love when it's given!! I think the best thing about the cast and performances in this film is that watching the film and listening to it are 2 completely opposite experiences. The actors convey one thing with their faces and another with their voices; it's pure talent. I was amazed.
3. If nothing else, this film should watched purely for Gillian Anderson. This project was so different than her 'X Files' persona - and such a success, at that. The way she uses her eyes to express 5 different emotions in a matter of seconds blew me away. Her acting and utter vulnerability was awe-inspiring.