Old 09-06-2001, 04:38 PM
Video Capsule: Dangerous Beauty 8.5/10

Dangerous Beauty 1998

cast: Catherine McCormack, Rufus Sewell, Jacqueline Bisset, Oliver Platt

Dangerous Beauty is an eloquent tale set in 16th century Venice. I believe the story to be loosely based on a true story, a story of a woman living in a time of a strict and unforgiving social class sytem, finds herself in love with a man from a class above. The unforbidden affair blossoms as the two lovers hide in shadows and behind closed doors. Predictably a climax occurs when Marco (Rufus Sewell aka John Murdoch from Dark City 8/10 )is forced to marry another and his love Veronica Franco(Catherine McCormack) because her family is penniless, must choose between a life of religious servitude or to become a courtesan. To be a courtesan meant she would be of a very rare and very unique breed of women. She would become one of the few women allowed to read, educate herself on literary works, politics, history and other worldly affairs. She would also have to learn to be a Lady, and a lady in many regards. She shall speak properly, have proper posture, dress properly and make her money by serving men properly! But not just any men. Only the wealthiest most powerful men of Venice, and hence she should be educated and present properly as she is to wine, dine and discuss with them all at the highest of social gala events.

Throughout this wondrous work of cinema we are bombarded with humor, beauty and wit. The sappy, yet heated, Love affair often takes a back seat to events of War and we see first hand the devastation of the bubonic plague. This film also shows us how easily we are threatened as men and how quick we are to fear what we do not know and find whatever scapegoats suit us best as a society. Catherine McCormack's performance is nothing less than stellar. Her ending courtroom speech I thought was nothing less than Oscar worthy. Rufus holds his own and Oliver Platt is an absolute delight playing the placater role as Rufus's brother.

Dangerous Beauty is a classic example of a phenomenal film which sadly did not receive wide scale box office distribution.

[This message has been edited by Bud_Fox (edited 09-06-2001).]
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Old 10-09-2001, 02:25 PM
*bump* Anyone... anyone else seen this great movie??

*buddy sits alone, his head hung hidden between his knees silently sobbing*

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Old 10-09-2001, 06:10 PM
It's been a while since I've seen the movie, but I do remember it being beautifully made. Interesting story, with Rufus Sewell playing a part he was born to play (and not the bad guy exactly).
I think I might have to refresh the memory and watch it again. From what I remember I would give it an 8/10.

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Old 10-12-2001, 11:49 AM
If there was any justice out there, and there isn't, this would have made Catherine McCormack a star. She certainly deserves it from her exquisite performance in this terrific movie. Infact, I think she deserved an oscar nomination, but naturally didn't get it. This is a wonderful movie, funny and sexy in the beginning but then the mood of the film changes in the last act where McCormack's character is in trial. McCormack has both sex appeal and the range and pulls off this role so fantastically. The rest of the cast was good too, but there was not one moment where my eyes were anywhere else but her while watching.
Grade: A-
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