5.0 out of 5 stars Bon film
Le film Anna and the King a été reçu en bon état et conforme à l'annonce du vendeur. Le DVD fonctionne très bien.
Published 16 days ago by Daniel Mérineau
3.0 out of 5 stars Boring
Not too accurate with the story. It's nice and dramatic. forgettable movie. Prepare to be bored for long stretches.
Published on Aug 1 2003 by C. Eng
Most Helpful First | Newest First
5.0 out of 5 stars Bon film,
This review is from: Anna and the King (Widescreen) (DVD)Le film Anna and the King a été reçu en bon état et conforme à l'annonce du vendeur. Le DVD fonctionne très bien.
5.0 out of 5 stars Anna and the King review,
This review is from: Anna and the King (Full Screen) (DVD)I bought this because Jodie Foster was the lead role in this film and also on the fact that she has done other interesting roles (eg: Nell). This is based on diaries written by Anna Leonowens (Jodie Foster). While she has preconceived notions of the East, the king (Chow Yun-Fat), has preconceived notions of the West. In spite of the danger of the growing political unrest, the respect for each other slowly turns into something more. Also starring in this movie is Geoffrey Palmer (As Time Goes By), Tom Felton (Louis, Anna's son). I would highly recommend this movie. It has a great story, wonderful scenery and a good cast.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A surprising, revisionist approach to a well-known, well-loved tale,
This review is from: Anna and the King (Full Screen) (DVD)I am originally from Montreal, Canada, where Anna Leonowens ended her days and is buried in Mount Royal cemetery, where most of my relatives now rest in peace. I have been familiar with her story since childhood (I am now in my 50's) and I love both this film and Margaret Langdon's book.
However, I have read very few reviews that point out just how much, unlike the previous other three versions - two of them "musicals" - available on DVD, this film version is at first unsympathetic, if not downright critical, of Anna's Imperialist and Colonial attitudes and opinions.
These were taken for granted and apparently supported, never questioned, by Rodgers and Hammerstein in their musical version - which, because of this, now appears somewhat "outdated". Since, in the musical, the composer and lyricist were not sensitive enough to the social and political implications of their approach, Anna's story is, to this day, still banned in Thailand...
In this version, King Mongkut fares a lot better and is treated with greater respect. A highly cultured and civilized monarch, he is understandably at a loss when "Hurricane Anna" first arrives at court! His is a far cry from Yul Brynner's broad interpretation, where he was portrayed as a "barbarian"; where Anna could do no wrong! This is a fresh, different, multicultural approach to a well-know, well-loved tale.
In this age of the Global Village and multiculturalism, all cultures deserve greater respect than they once received in the 19th century. Could this be one of the main points of this "remake": to set the record straight and hopefully correct the situation?
In spite of its flaws (well represented in other reviews), this film is well worth watching many times. Who knows? It might help us uncover and correct our own negative views as we relate to other peoples and cultures...
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Had to watch for a school project...,
This review is from: Anna and the King (Widescreen) (DVD)I thought that this film was very beautiful in content...this film had some real substance to it, and the actors did an excellent job in the portrayal of the characters involved...lovely story.....
5.0 out of 5 stars Mrs. T,
This review is from: Anna and the King (DVD)An excellent movie! I can now dispose of my VHS of this movie. I have the original with Yul Brenner but this updated version is much better.
5.0 out of 5 stars Simply a delightful story,
This review is from: Anna and the King (Widescreen) (DVD)After losing her husband in the jungle of India, Anna Leonowens embarks in a journey that will take her to Siam, where she will tutor the oldest son of King Mongkut. Her son, Louis, and two Hindu servants accompany her in this new endeavor. As soon as Anna sets foot in Bangkok, the difference between cultures surges as a predominant element that will remain present throughout the story. Even though the start is rocky, with Anna being called "Sir" for misogynist reasons and not being given the house she was promised but accommodation in the palace instead, the king discovers quickly the value of this woman that acts very different from what he is used to. That is why he decides that instead of tutoring his oldest son, she will be in charge of teaching all of his children...all 58 of them!
The movie evolves around three clear themes. First, the clash of cultures, which is enlightening and entertaining and as the movie evolves so does the acceptance and admiration each of the characters show for the positive points of the other's culture. Second, the relationship between Anna and the king, which starts as annoyance, moves to respect and continues developing from there. Third, the political atmosphere, which is characterized by attacks to Siamese people by Burmese armies, suspected to be supported by no other than the British Empire (the events unfold in 1862).
Although the movie is rather long, the events unfold at a pace that keeps the viewer interested at all times. The music fits the mood of the action perfectly well, and in the proper scenes it is so uplifting that it steals the attention of the viewer. Jodie Foster delivers a well-rounded role, but in my opinion the performance of Chow Yun-Fat is at a higher level. Finally, the scenery and the palaces where the movie develops are absolutely amazing.
Overall this is a highly enjoyable movie that will leave you thinking for a while about how every culture has its positive aspects and how, with a little patience, everyone can learn to appreciate this.
5.0 out of 5 stars I Keep Coming Back,
This review is from: Anna and the King (Widescreen) (DVD)It didn't surprise me when this first came out that it didn't get very good reviews. I almost didn't see it myself, but once I did see it, I just kept coming back. It's a glorious film.
The film itself is done with tremendous diligence -- the costumes, the scenery are fabulous. More importantly, the script is good -- the story itself is a good story. Some films have a really deepening story so that the characters and events are well understood and interconnected, and this is one of those. But the language is also beautiful. It's full of good lines. I think above all, it is Chow Yun-Fat's acting which makes the film -- his humanity, his depth and his nobility. I'm also astounded by the acting of the woman who plays Tuptim... And Jodie Foster fully holds up her end as well.
However, I can see many reasons why people would avoid it. The most important of these is that it's banned in Thailand. The Thai people regard it as an very Westernized take on the sotry. King Mongkut was in fact an old man at the time this happened, and not the charming young Chow Yun-Fat. There's apparently no evidence from King Mongkut's private diaries that he had anything like the feelings expressed in this film. I can easily believe this is true. The film is fiction. At the very least, I doubt very much that Mongkut's heroic stand on the bridge happened like it's portrayed in the film.
But I also can't buy that the film comes across as putting down Eastern culture. Unlike in "The King and I" (of which it is by no means a simple remake) where Anna clearly has the upper hand, this is an even match. She has as much to learn from him as he from her. England has as much to learn from Thailand as the other way around.
My mother didn't like it, because although she's the sort of person which appreciates a really good story, she can't stand graphic beheadings. And others of my friends don't like it, because although the like a good battle scene, they can't stand little girls dying in their father's arms -- too mushy. I take it all gladly.
But the ultimate compliment comes from my 12-year-old son who has seen it about twice a month since it came out. Every couple weeks he'll say, "I miss it. I have to watch Anna and the King".
5.0 out of 5 stars It keeps on getting better,
This review is from: Anna and the King (Widescreen) (DVD)Everytime I watch this movie, I'm awestruck at the beauty and wonder of it. From the scenery, to the drama, to the love story, and finally and most of all, to the music, I'm drawn to watch it over and over again. So much of the dialogue between the King and Anna points to moments in my life that makes me want to return to the time and place over and over. I loved "The King and I" with Deborah Kerr and Yul Brenner, but this story is so much richer without all the music and allows you to see into the souls of each character. This story is for all of us who ever had to give up the true love of our lives.
5.0 out of 5 stars Jodie Foster just gets better and better...,
This review is from: Anna & the King (VHS Tape)Having read the book and seen several versions of the musical on film and on stage, and being a true lover of the story of Anna Leonowens' experiences as teacher to the children of the King of Siam, I can honestly say that this is the most beautiful rendering of this tale I have yet to see. Whether or not she got the accent right (it really doesn't matter), Jodie Foster delivers a stunning performance as Anna, and the actor (I'm sorry, but I don't remember his name) who portrays the king is every bit as good as Jodie. This film captures the true emotions of the king and Anna as they struggle with the impossible attraction they have for each other and the frustration they feel at trying to comprehend one another's cultures. Definitely worth purchasing on DVD, as this film is visually magnificent.
5.0 out of 5 stars Exponentially More Intelligent Than The Musical,
This review is from: Anna and the King (Widescreen) (DVD)Writing coach Jerry Cleaver writes that a good story is one that gets to you, one where you identify with the main character, feel what they feel. Well, this story sure got to me. Anna's character was written so that while I couldn't identify with her at the beginning, I certainly could at the end. Unfortunately, I understand the frustrations of a forbidden love only too well.
In spite of the unbearable tension, I personally am glad they never kissed. But even after replaying it several times, it's hard to figure out, though, when the turning point was in their relationship. The King indirectly referred to Anna as "friend" during the banquet, so I knew Anna had his respect by then, but when did it become more? Hm.
This is a movie with incredible sets and an incredible setting, with wonderful costuming, and the CGI work is jawdropping! In the director's commentary, Andy Tennant describes a scene with Chow Yun Fat ("Fattie") and Jodie Foster, noting they weren't even in the same room together because each cutaway shot was done on different days! What a shock, too, to learn that the rocket scene was totally computerized! I love learning about the filmmaking process!
Former child actor Jodie Foster has earned my respect. Tenant said they wanted Kate Winslet to play Anna at first, but there's obviously nothing a voice coach and professionalism can't accomplish with a lot of hard work. That goes for all the actors, none of whom spoke their native languages.
Chow Yun-Fat, being Chinese, spoke neither Thai nor much English, but had to learn both for this movie. To my mind, that's genius. I understand this was his first and thusfar only dramatic role (he's known in his country for comedies and martial arts films). If more non-comedic and non-martial arts roles for Asians ever become available, this should open big doors for him. He's a fantastic leading man -- I thought he was gorgeous, and I'll take him over ANY European-American actor any day.
Bai Ling, who plays the doomed concubine Tuptim, gives just a powerful, powerful performance, and has to perform throughout the movie without any hair.
I have to give director Andy Tennant his props, too. This beautiful film has me interested in his other films. I want to see if he does this kind of work on a regular basis or is this just a wonderful fluke.
The children were just adorable, especially the little one who was the King's favorite. Difficult to watch her die, but such was life back then. There are things even a king can't control.
I couldn't stand The King and I; I found it terribly racist, like a lot of what came out of Hollywood back then. I was hoping for a more intelligently done movie that more realistically depicted what Thailand was like back then, and I personally am grateful to see a king that doesn't look like Mr. Clean, and doesn't kill himself just because he lost a white woman.
I highly recommend watching the outtakes and watching the movie with the director's commentary. It really makes the story make sense after you know some background.
This is one I'd buy in a heartbeat. I understand this didn't do well at the box office, but I'd relish the chance to see it for the first time on the big screen.
Most Helpful First | Newest First
Anna and the King (Widescreen) by Andy Tennant (DVD - 2003)
CDN$ 11.98 CDN$ 9.93