Anna and the King (Widescreen) (Bilingual) [Import]
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Academy Award winner Jodie Foster and international action star Chow Yun-Fat bring to life the epic true story of a woman who challenged the heart of a king and inspired the destiny of a nation. English school teacher Anna Leonowens has traveled to Siam to educate the fifty-eight children of King Mongkut. If she has preconceived notions about the East, the King has similar notions about the West. But amid the danger of growing political unrest, their respect for each other slowly turns into something more.
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Top Customer Reviews
I love both of the actors..... please bring us some more good stories about the life and legends... sincerely marcelle thank you.
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never questioned, by Rodgers and Hammerstein in their musical version - which, because of this, now appears somewhat "outdated".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...
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.Read more ›
On a side note, Jodie Foster delivers a solid performance like always. All the acting is good in this one, even by the child actors.
Most recent customer reviews
I really like this movie, I'm definitely biased because of my Thai heritage :pPublished 2 months ago by Melissa
I enjoy Anna and the King very much and I will see it againPublished 5 months ago by Barbara Bissett
The movie was very brilliant. The actors did an excellent job. The scenery was great along with all the animals and humanity. I loved the telling of story was captivating.Published 14 months ago by suzanne burgess
I will view it over and over. Jodie Foster and Chow Yun-Fat are wonderful together.Published 20 months ago by M. Marsan
It is greatly appreciated to view this movie on DVD as we had it on VHS only...one that we enjoy watching from time to time.Published on Dec 2 2013 by Kanden
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