Philip Kaufman achieves a delicate, erotic balance with his screen version of Milan Kundera's "unfilmable" novel. Adapted by Kaufman and Jean-Claude Carrière, the film follows a womanizing surgeon (Daniel Day-Lewis) as he struggles with his free-spirited mistress (Lena Olin) and his childlike wife (Juliette Binoche). An intimate epic, The Unbearable Lightness of Being charts the frontiers of relationships with wit, emotion, and devastating honesty.
Daniel Day-Lewis stars as Tomas, the happily irresponsible Czech lover of Milan Kundera's novel, which is set in Prague just before and during the Soviet invasion in 1968. Lena Olin and Juliette Binoche are the two vastly different women who occupy his attention and to some extent represent different sides of his values and personality. In any case, the character's decision to flee Russian tanks with one of them--and then return--has profound consequences on his life. Directed by Philip Kaufman, this rich, erotic, fascinating character study with allegorical overtones is a touchstone for many filmgoers. Several key sequences--such as Olin wearing a bowler hat and writhing most attractively--linger in the memory, while Kaufman's assured sense of the story inspires superb performances all around. --Tom Keogh --This text refers to an alternate DVD edition.
The setting is Prague before and after the invasion by the soviets - not so timely anymore but still riveting. Read morePublished on July 22 2011
I thoroughly enjoyed this film. Like another reviewer, I saw this movie when it was first released and owned it on VHS. This movie has something for everyone. Read morePublished on Nov. 12 2010 by Johannes Doreleyers
I read the book of Milan Kundera and it was so so good !!!!! When i saw this movie it was so so awful !!!!! Very bad interpretation of this book and bad actors !!!! Read morePublished on Nov. 29 2008 by Christel Gabriel
One of the most haunting aspects of this movie is that my video store today has it under the "Adult entertainment" section which I thought was a joke. Read morePublished on June 30 2007 by Jenny J.J.I.
Kundera's novel The Unbearable Lightness of Being is absolutely amazing, and this film falls so far short of it. Read morePublished on May 7 2004 by "mysterylanguage"
It is long. It is quiet and full of life and fantastic performances. Movie that stays with you for the rest of your life. One should get some kind of prize for title alone. Read morePublished on Jan. 23 2004 by Annonimous
Do yourself a favor and read Kundera's book to fully appreciate the nuances of this movie, things like what "lightness" stood for (freedom of self and sexual expression). Read morePublished on Jan. 14 2004 by Nearly Nubile