Stories of unhappy marriages that lead to affairs are not a fresh tale for cinema. It has been done multiple times. Some have been hits while some were misses. Lady Chatterley’s Lover is another story of a young wife in an unhappy marriage who follows a similar path. The film is adapted from D.H. Lawrence’s novel of the same name. This adaptation is directed by Laure de Clermont-Tonnerre and written for the screen by David Magee.
The story follows Constance Reid (Corrin), who is a beautiful young woman of upper-class birth and is married to Clifford Chatterley. Shortly after marriage, their relationship starts going down a dull path with a lack of sexual encounters. This is partly due to Clifford getting severely injured during his time at war, and he has to use a wheelchair due to it which ended his military career and leaves him at a sad point in life. At his country estate, Lady Chatterley meets their gamekeeper Oliver Mellors (O’Connell), and things start steaming up pretty soon between them.
The two lonely people find some kind of companionship and solace in each other at a rather low point in their lives. Their infidelity doesn’t seem wrong as the viewer grows to understand the circumstances and often sympathizes with them. The two leads have electric chemistry and give brilliant performances, as they carry the film when the plot is rather plain. But their romance is so believable, that it is very hard to take your eyes off them.
The Costumes and production design are also great. The director captures the emotions expertly and also gives us some very comforting visuals. There is a lot of sex and nudity, but it never seems excessive or gratuitous. The supporting also do their jobs well and don’t bring down the momentum of the film. The score is subtle and effective. The dialogues are polished but bring out the characters’ feelings really smoothly. The tone also works and apart from a few pacing issues, I don’t have a lot of major complaints.
Lady Chatterley’s Lover is a gorgeously shot sensual love story, that has the power to move you despite having a familiar plot. It might not be mong blowing and it will probably not get you weeping but in the end, it is just a really well-made movie, one that I really enjoyed watching and one that left me satisfied by the end. It is definitely a recommendation for people who enjoy romantic dramas.
Rating – 85%