A Little Chaos

2014

Action / Drama / Romance

0
IMDb Rating 6.5 10 16017

Synopsis


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Director

Cast

Kate Winslet as Sabine De Barra
Stanley Tucci as Philippe, Duc d'Orleans
Matthias Schoenaerts as André Le Notre
Jennifer Ehle as Madame De Montespan
720p.BLU 1080p.BLU
817.51 MB
1280*720
English
R
23.976 fps
1hr 52 min
P/S 3 / 34
1.65 GB
1920*1080
English
R
23.976 fps
1hr 52 min
P/S 0 / 13

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by dierregi 8 / 10

Precious gem of a movie

A rare gem in the world of contemporary movies, this story has sympathetic characters. I thought they all but disappeared from the screen. It is purely fictional, but I like to believe it could have happened. Schoenaerts plays Andre Le Notre, the real landscape architect who designed the park of Versailles for King Louis XIV. Andre is interviewing other landscape gardeners to help him with the job, among them the only woman, fictional Sabine De Barra (Winslet).

They don't meet so cute, but Le Notre is intrigued and Sabine is hired. In the society of the time, Sabine is a bit of a low class oddity who manages to make friends in high places. Admitted to court, she attracts attention and curiosity for her beauty and skills, but she also attract Le Notre's wife jealousy.

Le Notre is unhappily married with his unfaithful Madame, but Madame is well connected at court and sort of blackmails him into staying with her. However, that will not stop the slowly burning romance between Andre and Sabine.

Sabine holds back not only because Andre is married but also because of her mysterious tragic past.

We finally get to know Sabine's sad history during one of the most moving scenes of the film. Sabine talks to the court ladies and discovers that they also share tragic losses, although at court it is forbidden to talk about death. Once able to face her past, Sabine can finally move into her future.

Winslet is really good as Sabine and Schoenaerts seems particularly gifted for the role of the strong, silent, lover. He had similar roles in The Danish Girl and Suite Francaise and was equally good. Their scenes together are moving and tender, without any of the artificial slickness or aggressiveness of contemporary romances.Rickman playing Louis XIV as a rather melancholic man who takes a fatherly fancy to Sabine.

The music is not overbearing period and the costumes are absolutely fantastic. The final scene looks like is taking place in the real, still existing, rock ballroom.

Great movie, a balm for the soul.

Reviewed by studioAT 3 / 10

Alan Rickman's film of lovely moments

Alan Rickman is one of the many talents we lost in 2016 and this was one of the few films he directed.

It's not a fantastic film, more a collection of good moments that sadly never join up, but you can't fault Rickman or Kate Winslet, who shine when on screen.

It was released in a year with a lot of other similar films, and perhaps that hurt it in terms of acclaim, as did the fact that the plot isn't the easiest to explain, but as I say, there are certainly moments within it that make it worth a watch.

We miss Alan Rickman terribly.

Reviewed by The D'Ascoyne Family 6 / 10

Not enough chaos

It's worth it just for one last glimpse of Alan Rickman in full uncomfortable sneer, the pained uncle, so wounded and so wise... And it's worth it for some other stuff too, including a Winslet somehow more mature, and some truly beautiful images from Rickman as director.

But there's a sense that - like its late lamented director - the script of A Little Chaos could have given us so much more. Having decided for dramatic purposes to get so chaotic with the truth - in reality Le Notre the head gardener was decades older than the King, not t'other way round, and Winslet's radical female gardener simply didn't exist - the writers don't take much creative advantage.

Perhaps lacking confidence in any of the strands, they try to throw in too much that remains undeveloped: the back-story of Winslet's family is worthily sad, but neither necessary nor developed into any explanation of her relationship to natural forces; supplanted mistress Jennifer Ehle's semi-secret court of wounded women is a surprising, haunting and beautiful moment, but basically a digression; Stanley Tucci is wasted; a couple of pat metaphors aside, the tension between order and chaos doesn't go anywhere.

Structurally, Rickman the writer-director has made Rickman the actor part of the problem. Because from the opening scene we see the fragile warmth behind the monarchical mask - and because it's Alan Rickman and everyone knows that Professor Snape always secretly cares - he can't carry the kind of threat required of the capricious absolute ruler. If the King was still a distant authority, his scene with Winslet and the pear tree would be a moment of revelation and transformation; instead it's just pleasant and a bit poignant. And by then, there's no chance that he's going to be anything other than indulgent of the apparent hiccough of the waterlogged garden.

There's a similar lost opportunity around Schoenaerts. His Le Notre doesn't develop at all. He's a bit snooty in his first scene, but after that he's just sort of romantically moody. The potential conflict and tension between a (much more) austere, order-obsessed Le Notre and a (more) wild and wilful Winslet is never realized. Because Madame Le Notre is such a horror, and promiscuous, and already signed up to an open relationship, there's no practical or moral obstacle to Schoenaerts and Winslet leaping into the shrubbery. There's no tension, and no sense of achievement.

(And they don't even leap into the shrubbery. All that mud, and all that luscious fruit, and they finally get it on indoors, which seems rather a waste - as well as a defusing of the little passion there was.)

Pruned (sorry) and chopped around a bit, the script would have more energy and grip. If Schoenaerts was really uncomfortable about Winslet's garden planning, and about the idea of betraying his wife, Winslet and the story would have something to aim at and work on. If Rickman seemed capable of ruining lives by banishment from employment in his Eden, the risks and tensions would have consequences and impact. Say Schoenaerts is still uncertain, about the funky horticulture and about Winslet, when the more perceptive Mrs Le Notre ruins the garden to forestall the threat of losing her husband; Schoenaerts and Winslet then have their moment of near-death near-passion in the tempest; Jennifer Ehle's boudoir then becomes a place of real refuge, from a very grumpy King and from the unknown result of the passion; the nicely-staged Mexican stand-off between the wounded ladies and the King's posse can then be a moment of real resolution - what if that's the moment when she realizes that the King who could be about to ruin her is the same mysterious figure she met under the pear tree? - when Winslet's spirit and argument must convince the King, and when Schoenaerts must decide to follow his heart and speak up for her.

Instead Rickman denies himself a fitting farewell, and we're left wanting what might have been.

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