Captain Corelli’s Mandolin movie – Watch Captain Corelli’s Mandolin 123movies
I have to admit that I approached this movie with a sense of expectation and dread. Louis de Berniere’s bestselling novel is one of my favourites and anyone who has read it will realise that there is no way in hell that any screen adaptation can be 100% faithful.
Captain Corelli’s Mandolin movie
Review Captain Corelli’s Mandolin movie by FlickJunkie-2: Ambitious project falls slightly short
As is often the case when you attempt to take a 400 plus page book and cram it into a two hour film, a lot is lost. Here director John Madden (Shakespeare in Love) takes on an extremely ambitious project and almost pulls it off. What we get is a charming and emotionally compelling film that seems somehow incomplete.
There is much about this film that is wonderful and fantastic. The cinematography by John Toll (Cinematographer for Braveheart and Legends of the Fall, winning Oscars for both) is splendid. Working with Madden, the choices for locations on the Greek island of Kefallonia are superb and the visual images that come from photographing these majestic locations in varying light are lush and beautiful. Madden also uses numerous Greek actors as the townspeople, giving the town an authentic feel. The soundtrack is also terrific and the mandolin passages and vocals by the Italian soldiers are marvelous.
Madden does an excellent job of bringing us the Italian occupation and the romance, which take up the greater part of the film. There are numerous sweet and funny moments throughout this segment. However, by the time the serious battle drama is ready to unfold, there isn’t much film left in the reel and this component is extremely rushed and abbreviated. While the battle scenes are well done, subsequent to the battle it is obvious that increasingly greater compromises are being made to keep the film from running too long. By the time we reach the post war scenes, the treatment is merely skeletal. Another negative is that the DVD is particularly sparse on features.
Nicholas Cage is charming in the romantic lead as the sentimental Captain who seems to have joined the army to sing rather than fight. When fight he must, Cage switches gears seamlessly into a man of fierce principle and resolve and somehow remains believable in both personas.
Penelope Cruz, whom the camera loves, gives an uninspired performance as Pelagia. In part this is because Cage so dominates the screen, but Cruz just seems too placid in a part that should be emotionally torrential and dynamic. She allows the character to be objectified as Corelli’s love interest rather than establishing her as a powerful character in her own right.
John Hurt gives a fantastic performance as the wise old doctor, who knows as much about human nature as medicine. However, Christian Bale seems a bit overwrought and stiff as Pelagia’s fiancé.
I rated this film an 8/10. Despite some drawbacks, this is a touching film that is well worth seeing. The photography alone is worth the price of admission.
Review Captain Corelli’s Mandolin movie by sddavis63: Love And War And Occupation
After a somewhat slow start I thought this movie about the Italian occupation of a Greek island during World War II picked up and became a quite enjoyable watch for a couple of hours, from primarily two points of view.
The love triangle is an interesting one and strikes me as believable, because I know it happened in various places under occupation. Penelope Cruz played Pelagia, a young Greek girl engaged to be married to Mandras (Christian Bale). I had questions about the depth of their love from the start, but their future was torn apart when Italy invaded Greece, and Mandras went off to fight. After German intervention, Greece is conquered and the island Pelagia lives on comes under Italian occupation, during which Pelagia meets and begins to fall in love with Captain Corelli (Nicholas Cage.) This, of course, was a dilemma that came to many young women in occupied lands. As they got to know their occupiers, they started to see them not as the enemy but as real people, and sometimes fell in love – often to the disapproval of their neighbours. I just finished reading an interesting book about the German occupation of Britain’s Channel Islands in which this was a major issue. Once Mandras returns to the island, Pelagia is torn between them.
The second background issue is the Italian occupation itself, which I thought was quite realistically portrayed. First was the contempt with which the island treated their Italian occupiers. Greece defeated Italy (quite true from a historical perspective) and was really conquered by the Germans. The refusal of the town to surrender to the Italians and instead to insist on surrendering to a German officer struck me as something that could well have happened (and was quite funny in fact. I loved the line, “we would rather surrender to this German’s dog than to you Italians.”) The portrayal of the Italian troops also struck me as believable. The Italian Army was never enamoured of their German ally, and never enthusiastic about fighting with them. Although Hitler and Mussolini were close friends, their soldiers tended to treat each other with contempt. Here, the Italians are more interested in singing than fighting (which the German troops on the island simply can’t understand,) and are ecstatic when Italy makes peace and withdraws from the war – until they discover that this may well make them prisoners of the Germans. It was all quite well done, I thought.
It falters a bit at the end with an all too predictable finish, but still deserves praise.
Review Captain Corelli’s Mandolin movie by Helen14: The film is a true depiction of went on in Cephallonia during the war and after.
Being Of Cephallonian descent, I was happily surprised when watching the movie. I have heard the true history from my relatives that still live in Cephalonia, but when watching the movie and reading the book the sketchy bits of history were filled. It is all true, the Italians would sing, the oppression and the earthquakes that rock the island so often. The earthquake in 1953 killed my great grandfather and the book and movie both portray the feeling of the era with great compassion. If you haven’t seen the movie go and watch it and read the book, it is not only a love story, and yes, there were plenty of Italians in love with Cephallonian women, in fact, boat loads of Cephallonian women were taken to Italy after the war, it is a true depiction of history.