Far From the Maddening Crowd is a cinematic beaut, backed by a powerful chemistry between Carey Mulligan and Matthias Schoenaerts.
Praise to the Danish director Thomas Vinterberg (The Hunt) for brining Thomas Hardy’s 1874 classic novel to life. Vinterberg worked diligently to capture the true breathtaking landscape of Victorian England and grow a raw relationship between a sheepherder and a woman. Bathsheba Everdene (Mulligan) is an independent and headstrong woman who is attracted to three suitors (Schoenaerts, Michael Sheen and Tom Sturridge).
The audience will surely be rooting for the sheepherder, Mr. Oak (Schoenaerts), to take Everdene’s heart.
Vinterberg cleaned off the edges from the dusty novel and poured vivid life into the film through its beautiful cinematography and heart-beating storyline. Cinematographer Charlotte Bruus Christensen (Submarino and The Hunt) captures the elegance of Victorian England, while also showing the allure between Mr. Oak and Everdene’s relationship. Unfortunately, Everdene can’t make up her mind because she is too strong willed and denies Mr. Oak’s marriage proposal at the beginning of the film.
Then it’s a gentle farmer named William Boldwood (Sheen) who’s stunned by Mulligan’s grace and practically proposes on sight. Everdene refuses. "I'd like to be a bride at a wedding," she says, "but without a husband." But it ends up being hotheaded Sgt. Troy (Sturridge) who Everdene falls for. This cheeky sword-swinging snub is a bad call for Everdene. But Vinterberg gives it time and in the end Everdene realizes who her true love really is. From the polished countryside of England too the star-studded performances by Mulligan, Schoenaerts, Michael Sheen and Tom Sturridge, Far From the Maddening Crowd is a historic love affair.
Far From the Maddening Crowd is rated PG-13 (Parents Strongly Cautioned). For some sexuality and violence.