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THE CRITIC: Garden Of Eden

by Erin Darling 3 December 2010 515 views No Comment E-mail Erin Darling


Garden Of Eden is a film adaptation of Ernest Hemingway’s novel of the same name, which was released posthumously in 1986. Nearly thirty years later, it is still considered to be one of his most mysterious and controversial works. Screenwriter James Scott Linville and Director John Irvin attempt to capture the provocative nature of this novel, succeeding in most departments.

The film follows David Bourne (Jack Huston), a young American writer on his European honeymoon with new wife, Catherine (Mena Suvari). Catherine, a wealthy socialite, becomes bored on the lavish vacation and begins to lust for new locales and sexual taboo. It begins with cutting off her long hair and experimenting with gender roles, but quickly moves to inviting a bisexual woman, Marita (Caterina Murino), into their lives and eventually into their bedroom. What begins as a game or a desperate cry for attention, soon becomes a complicated three-way relationship with high emotional stakes. Catherine’s increasingly odd and jealous behavior brings David and Marita closer together, adding tension to their already strained marriage.

For the most part, the acting in this film was superb. Mena Suvari shines as Catherine Bourne. She delves into a complex character that she describes as the most challenging role she’s taken on in her entire career. Caterina Murino’s performance as the beautiful Italian woman who comes between David and Catherine Bourne is subtle and sexy. However, the women in this film steal the show away from Jack Huston, whose portrayal of David Bourne leaves something to be desired.

Overall, Garden of Eden is a good cinematic adaptation of Hemingway’s popular novel. The film plugs along at a steady pace, bringing the complicated characters and storyline to life. It’s also quite the visual spectacle: everything about the film is beautiful, from the filming locations (Spain, France, and a Kenyan national park) to the1920s jazz age costumes, and even the good looking cast. This film is worth seeing for those who are looking for an exotic escape this holiday season.

**For more reviews and movie news, check out MovieFill.com

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