Wide Sargasso Sea (1993)




Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

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Movie Info

Director John Duigan brings Jean Rhys' difficult 1966 best-selling novel to the screen. It's a story meant to be a prequel to Charlotte Bronte's novel Jane Eyre, surmising what drove the first Mrs. Rochester mad in that novel. In Jamaica in the 1840s, slavery has been recently outlawed. Plantation owner Annette Cosway (Rachel Ward) has become so poor that she marries a rich, boorish Englishman whom she does not love. Her husband, Paul Mason (Michael York), is a sexist, racist tyrant who mistreats his servants and his wife. Paul flees to England after the servants and their countrymen revolt and burn down the mansion, killing Annette's young son. Annette goes insane and is consigned to the care of a servant. Her daughter Antoinette (Karina Lombard) is placed in a convent until she is old enough to inherit the property, but the inheritance depends on her marrying a proper husband. By previous arrangement, she marries Edward Rochester (Nathaniel Parker). At first they are lustily in love, but Rochester proves to be as elitist who is as disrespectful as Mason. Rochester has title to all of Antoinette's property, but he despises Jamaica and wants to return to England. He also fears the black magic of Christophene (Claudia Robinson), who mixes up a voodoo potion which ends up driving the couple farther apart. ~ Michael Betzold, Rovi
Art House & International , Drama , Romance
Directed By:
Written By:
In Theaters:
Sony Pictures Home Entertainment


Karina Lombard
as Antoinette Cosway
Nathaniel Parker
as Edward Rochester
Rachel Ward
as Annette Cosway
Michael York
as Paul Mason
Martine Beswick
as Aunt Cora
Claudia Robinson
as Christophene
Rowena King
as Amelie
Huw Christie Williams
as Richard Mason
Ben Thomas
as Daniel Conway
Paul Campbell (IV)
as Young Bull
Kevin Thomas
as Benbow
Bobby Smith
as Machete Man
Naomi Watts
as Fanny Grey
Show More Cast

Critic Reviews for Wide Sargasso Sea

All Critics (12) | Top Critics (4)

No excerpt available.

Full Review… | September 7, 2011
Entertainment Weekly
Top Critic

No excerpt available.

Full Review… | March 25, 2009
Top Critic

No excerpt available.

Full Review… | October 23, 2008
Entertainment Weekly
Top Critic

No excerpt available.

Full Review… | January 25, 2006
Time Out
Top Critic

No excerpt available.

Full Review… | May 20, 2003
New York Times
Top Critic

No excerpt available.

May 12, 2001
Rolling Stone
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for Wide Sargasso Sea

A sad and tragic story based on a character in Charlotte Bronte's novel Jane Eyre during mid-19th Century Jamaica.

King Lam
King Lam

I was attracted to the movie as I recently learned about what and where the Sargasso Sea is. There is not much to learn watching this movie however. Well perhaps you learn not to be born in the mid 17th century, and to treat your slaves with a little compassion.

Red Lats
Red Lats

Super Reviewer

Pointless period piece with a tepid performance from the main actors. They both appeared to be uninterested in what they were doing. Ward and York are purely window dressing for name value. Karina Lombard is attractive (and I enjoyed her performance in The 4400 tv series), however Rowena King showed her up in this movie. This will leave you scratching your head wondering why (and how) it got the NC-17 rating.

Don Schick
Don Schick

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