"Imagines itself of a pedigree far, far out of reach."
TV-grade movie based on Dodie Smith’s novel about the bedlam family of a has-been writer, living impecuniously passive until the two of-age daughters vie for the affection of a bourgeoisie young man.The older daughter (Rose Byrne), more traditionally pretty, also seeks out his attention more conventionally, making it obvious that she’s after his wealth and status, foregoing the necessity of love (“I’d marry a chimpanzee if he had money”). On the opposite side is the younger daughter (Romola Garai), sweetly sensual, coy, and literate-minded (she wants to be a writer also, as verbalized through her voiceover narrative diary) who finds love by mistake. The tragedy of the thing is supposed to be in the vicissitudes of misplaced love. Apart from some nice work done by Garai (especially impressive) and Byrne, the movie plays as a beginner’s version of a literary piece, dealing specifically with making literature. Compare it to Swimming Pool, where the writer is carefully examined in her environment and over her meticulous routine, with subtle skills shown by Ozon in the construction of plot and pace; I Capture the Castle is a failed abecedarian attempt, the whole while far too conscious and obvious about the conventions of writing, as well as its own “literature.” Directed by Tim Fywell; with Bill Nighy, Tara Fitzgerald, Henry Cavill, Henry Thomas, and Sinead Cusack.[See it if you must.]
OFFICIAL SELECTION: 2003 Seattle Film Festival. For more in the 2003 Seattle Film Festival series, click here.
OFFICIAL SELECTION: 2003 Palm Springs Film Festival. For more in the 2003 Palm Springs Film Festival series, click here.