Far From the Madding Crowd - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Far From the Madding Crowd Reviews

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Super Reviewer
½ November 14, 2015
A very faithful adaptation that may not be a memorable classic in itself but translates well the essence of Hardy's novel into a concise narrative that benefits from a uniformly perfect cast and takes its time to tell what it needs without rush, despite the rather hasty ending.
Super Reviewer
June 20, 2007
Absolutely gorgeous version of the Hardy classic, with some captivating scenes particularly the storm sequence. Some of the top talent of the acting world of the 60's is on hand making this an entertaining epic. A livelier pace would have made it more compelling however. All the leads acquit themselves well but top honors go to Alan Bates, an actor of great skill.
Super Reviewer
½ July 4, 2009
Hardy's novel is brought to life with passion and flair.
Bill D 2007
Super Reviewer
½ December 14, 2011
John Schlesinger's surprisingly dull three-hour epic "Far From the Madding Crowd" is not so much a movie as a TV mini-series. It is grandly majestic in its look but puny in its content and perspective.

Just because something is filmed in wide-screen Cinemascope and covers a long chronological period doesn't mean it is broad in perspective. "Madding" has the look of a grand epic but the content of a soap opera. The Thomas Hardy novel upon which it is based must have some depth. But Schlesinger ends up providing the appearance of depth more than the real thing. His actors, who are almost absurdly talented, give a lot of meaningful looks, but they have little to say that is interesting.

Almost everyone from England's 1960s acting royalty is represented here, including Julie Christie, Terence Stamp, Alan Bates and Peter Finch. But great actors cannot do much more than look regal when all they have is soap opera to play. This is the downfall of British television in general: almost without fail it puts aristocratic actors into petit-bourgeois soap opera.

The film Schlesinger made after this, "Midnight Cowboy" (1969), is so much better than "Madding" that it's almost surreal. How could the same person direct these two films in the span of a few years? Amazing.

(Incidentally, I still don't know what the hell "madding" means. Also incidentally, if you haven't seen "Midnight Cowboy," you are missing out on something extraordinary.)
Super Reviewer
½ October 3, 2007
Typical Thomas Hardy - painful love stories. In "Far From the Madding Crowd", Julie Christie's character captivates one character after another - each with his different flaws.
Super Reviewer
September 3, 2010
The costumes and scenery of this romantic saga are wonderful, and the direction is impeccable (John Schlesinger, with help from cinematographer Nicolas Roeg). But there's something curiously unsatisfying about this Thomas Hardy adaptation. Maybe it's that Julie Christie never earns much empathy as the heroine Bathsheba, and just seems irritatingly fickle. Maybe it's that she wastes so much energy on the terminally skeevy Francis (Terence Stamp), and neglects poor Gabriel (Alan Bates). Maybe it's the abrupt happy ending, which defies the tone of everything which precedes it. Or maybe the film is just overlong. But something doesn't fit.

I do know this much: The scene where moronic Francis wins Bathsheba's heart through showing off his sword tricks is one of the most ludicrous scenes I can remember seeing in a movie which intends to be a classy drama. I was haunted by its embarrassing memory throughout the remainder of the film and beyond.
Super Reviewer
October 5, 2008
The English can do no wrong.A rising star sitting in the director's chair having 4 future giants in front of the camera,deliberately tarnished cinematography for the social depiction of a counter-cultural status on Hardy's book.3 decades later Winterbottom would explore another Hardy book in perfection,nevertheless,Schlesinger gives us a magnitude of a film.
October 15, 2015
still,4 me the best version of the oft told Thomas Hardy tale of love & loss with a strong heroine of this story.
November 22, 2011
Not my boy Schles's finest hour. Stamp illustrating his swordsmanship in three minute dream sequence reminiscent of "heffalumps and woozles" sequence in Winnie The Pooh
September 11, 2009
This is not the version I saw but they don't have it listed. The one I saw starred Nathaniel Parker and Paloma Baeza. This is the best I've ever seen of Mr. Parker however, what a freaking mess of a story. Bathsheba is selfish and "a player" in her own time. She didn't deserve Gabriel Oak who was a good man and truly loved her in spite of her flaws. Poor guy. God help him later on. And yet AGAIN I was robbed of seeing a kiss or even a hug. Damn I hate that!!!
November 23, 2015
Besides lavishly filmed and romantically scored, this adaptation of Thomas Hardy's novel about a young woman's coming-of-age love story with three men is barely an unforgettable Victorian classic.
½ September 30, 2015
Far from the Madding Crowd lives up to the expectations for a period epic (a la Ben Hur, the Sound of Music, etc.) made in the 60s. The transfer is surprisingly good. The characters are enigmatic and the plot does not conclude with much catharsis (which probably figures into some of the low ratings). But all-in-all Far from the Madding Crowd is fine for what it is.
February 29, 2008
Splendidly lusty fare, its feet deep in the mud of the English countryside, its head in the lens-flared glare of a dreamy tragi-romantic sky.
September 20, 2015
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July 24, 2015
John Schlesinger's 1967 adaptation may be a bit dated and long-winded, but it does a far superior job of translating Thomas Hardy to the screen than this the 2015 Thomas Vinterberg version.

Something is captured here by Alan Bates, Peter Finch and the unforgettable Julie Christie that seems impossible to match much less beat.

It is both majestic and clearly executed. Nicolas Roeg's cinematography is amazing.
May 10, 2015
As someone that really isn't a fan of period piece costume dramas, this is a pretty good one. Though overlong, Christie, Stamp, and Finch give wonderful performances. Beautiful cinematography, costumes, and production design and a wonderful score.
April 8, 2015
wonderful film - never tire of it
March 18, 2015
Need to see this again
January 20, 2015
Cuando John Schlesinger hacia buenas peliculas...Julie Christie una diosa.
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