The Cook, the Thief, His Wife & Her Lover Reviews

  • Feb 16, 2021

    Privileged narcissism parading about in it's own filth while nature holds him, at their absolute expense. This film is a diamond in the rough, or perhaps a rough one amongst so many identical diamonds. The camera movement, lighting, strong characters, themes of love, defiance, passion, irresistibility, destruction, disregard, passivity and grace all collide here to make one hell of a symphony. Even if it feels repetitive, it is a familiarity that grows on you and only strengthens the underlying message. Candy for viewers on so many levels. A must watch. Greenaway is a writer/director that I will now gorge upon. This film is clever without being overdone. I was quite surprised how much I enjoyed this work of art.

    Privileged narcissism parading about in it's own filth while nature holds him, at their absolute expense. This film is a diamond in the rough, or perhaps a rough one amongst so many identical diamonds. The camera movement, lighting, strong characters, themes of love, defiance, passion, irresistibility, destruction, disregard, passivity and grace all collide here to make one hell of a symphony. Even if it feels repetitive, it is a familiarity that grows on you and only strengthens the underlying message. Candy for viewers on so many levels. A must watch. Greenaway is a writer/director that I will now gorge upon. This film is clever without being overdone. I was quite surprised how much I enjoyed this work of art.

  • Oct 08, 2020

    Peter Greenaway pushes film as a medium to the extreme, crafting an unequivocal masterpiece. The great minds of Production Designers Jan Roelfs, Ben Van Os, Cinematographer Sacha Vinery, and French Fashion Designer Jean Paul Gaultier all come together to serve a story that has grown to be even more relevant in America today. In collaboration with Production Designers Jan Roelfs and Ben Van Os, each location resides in the uncanny; the exterior world resembles a stage and this is exposed from the opening shot. We jib from the scaffolding below to the streets above. This is a world in which the viewer is immediately aware of its falsehood. The city streets are in direct contrast to the interior of the restaurant where the majority of the picture takes place. Having been recently purchased by abusive, amoral entrepreneur Albert Spica, he turns the restaurant into a personal kitchen. Here, the audience is bathed in spectacular opulence. Production Designers Roelfs and Van Os leave no stone unturned by covering every inch of the dining hall in red luxury. Cinematographer Sacha Vinery frames this location by only allowing the audience to face one direction, usually sticking to a wide angle lens, similar to how one would view a play. Much like the exterior world, the beauty of this luxurious interior is merely a façade covering a much greater evil. This is paralleled by the beautiful work of Jean Paul Gaultier. Albert Spica and his gang of thuggish associates are dressed in only the finest. Juxtaposed by Michael, the character Albert's wife Georgina is having an affair with, is only ever seen in more modest clothing. Both Michael and the workers are terrorized by Albert and his gang. Gorging themselves in an endless number of courses, meal after meal, unable to be satisfied. Greenaway uses excess to define corruption. This is a movie concerned with entrepreneurialism, decadence and the corruption of man.

    Peter Greenaway pushes film as a medium to the extreme, crafting an unequivocal masterpiece. The great minds of Production Designers Jan Roelfs, Ben Van Os, Cinematographer Sacha Vinery, and French Fashion Designer Jean Paul Gaultier all come together to serve a story that has grown to be even more relevant in America today. In collaboration with Production Designers Jan Roelfs and Ben Van Os, each location resides in the uncanny; the exterior world resembles a stage and this is exposed from the opening shot. We jib from the scaffolding below to the streets above. This is a world in which the viewer is immediately aware of its falsehood. The city streets are in direct contrast to the interior of the restaurant where the majority of the picture takes place. Having been recently purchased by abusive, amoral entrepreneur Albert Spica, he turns the restaurant into a personal kitchen. Here, the audience is bathed in spectacular opulence. Production Designers Roelfs and Van Os leave no stone unturned by covering every inch of the dining hall in red luxury. Cinematographer Sacha Vinery frames this location by only allowing the audience to face one direction, usually sticking to a wide angle lens, similar to how one would view a play. Much like the exterior world, the beauty of this luxurious interior is merely a façade covering a much greater evil. This is paralleled by the beautiful work of Jean Paul Gaultier. Albert Spica and his gang of thuggish associates are dressed in only the finest. Juxtaposed by Michael, the character Albert's wife Georgina is having an affair with, is only ever seen in more modest clothing. Both Michael and the workers are terrorized by Albert and his gang. Gorging themselves in an endless number of courses, meal after meal, unable to be satisfied. Greenaway uses excess to define corruption. This is a movie concerned with entrepreneurialism, decadence and the corruption of man.

  • Aug 25, 2020

    wow - like clockwork orange - hard to watch but consumed by the disregard for boundaries - it was one surprise after another that never ended

    wow - like clockwork orange - hard to watch but consumed by the disregard for boundaries - it was one surprise after another that never ended

  • Aug 04, 2020

    It is the freshest small budget film of 80's about class, desire, love, poverty, tragedy bitter truths of society and what not. even after 30 years of its release nobody has been able to exploit the style of this film. Everything is done with subtlety and sarcastically. Funny, erotic, words are less to describe this film. It is such a strange representation.

    It is the freshest small budget film of 80's about class, desire, love, poverty, tragedy bitter truths of society and what not. even after 30 years of its release nobody has been able to exploit the style of this film. Everything is done with subtlety and sarcastically. Funny, erotic, words are less to describe this film. It is such a strange representation.

  • Jul 25, 2020

    Genial Peter Greenway.

    Genial Peter Greenway.

  • Feb 27, 2020

    Basically a film made out of tableaus that create a telling narrative

    Basically a film made out of tableaus that create a telling narrative

  • Mar 28, 2019

    A emotionally-interactive film that draws your attention beginning to end. Beautiful!

    A emotionally-interactive film that draws your attention beginning to end. Beautiful!

  • Feb 13, 2019

    Certainly not a movie for everyone. Helen Mirren is exquisite as always. Meanwhile, Michael Gambon is incredible as her pompous, foul-mouthed criminal husband. Strangely, this film's elegant offensiveness is as palatable as its artistic and intellectual mood and attention to detail.

    Certainly not a movie for everyone. Helen Mirren is exquisite as always. Meanwhile, Michael Gambon is incredible as her pompous, foul-mouthed criminal husband. Strangely, this film's elegant offensiveness is as palatable as its artistic and intellectual mood and attention to detail.

  • Jan 28, 2019

    A woman begins a torrid romance of infidelity and tries to keep it from her nefarious husband. Acting: 10 There is a reason Helen Mirren is one of my favorite actresses. She can be vulnerable and powerful all in the same breath. She makes you sympathize with her character and champion for her to win. She plays Georgina, the wife of a thug. She hates her life and is longing for more. The way she expresses that longing is done in subtle fashion, yet you can feel exactly what she is feeling. There are a number of strong performances in the film, but none quite as strong as hers. Beginning: 1 I couldnâ(TM)t tell up from down when the movie started. I didnâ(TM)t know what to think, who to hate, or who to root for. That all eventually became clear, but the beginning was very muddled and had me losing hope that the movie could be good. Good thing thereâ(TM)s more to this film than the first ten minutes. Characters: 7 The title, of course, gives away the characters that dominate the story. Each character carries their own weight and adds a different value to the story. Outside of Georgina, I enjoyed watching Alan Howard act out his role of Michael the Lover. He has an air of ignorance with a touch of nobility. Heâ(TM)s a good guy that enjoys being alone, not realizing that he is looking for someone special in his life. That is, until he meets Georgina who turns his life upside down. The interactions between the two provide for a number of great scenes. And, no, Iâ(TM)m not just referring to the sex, although there are some steamy scenes. Cinematography/Visuals: 10 Conflict: 8 Genre: 8 Definitely not the best drama Iâ(TM)ve seen, but hands-down, one of the most unique. I can honestly say Iâ(TM)ve never seen anything quite like this movie. Itâ(TM)s different for a lot of reasons, but mainly in the way the film is shot which helps push the overall tone. It shines with a special kind of flare that sticks in your memory. Memorability: 8 Pace: 5 Plot: 10 Unique story with an interesting twist. I appreciate when movies try and do something different, and thatâ(TM)s where (insert long title here) succeeds. Itâ(TM)s a gut-wrenching love story told with conviction and passion. Resolution: 10 Canâ(TM)t talk about this movie without talking about that ending. Wow, what an ending! Didnâ(TM)t see it coming in the least. It was both unbelievable and gratifying at the same time. If you havenâ(TM)t heard of or seen this movie, I wonâ(TM)t ruin it for you. Iâ(TM)ll just say prepare to be pleasantly shocked. Overall: 77 A stronger beginning and a quicker pace could have made this movie excellent, but itâ(TM)s still solid enough for a one-time watch. I can guarantee you The Cook, the Thief, His Wife, and Her Lover will be unlike anything youâ(TM)ve ever seen before.

    A woman begins a torrid romance of infidelity and tries to keep it from her nefarious husband. Acting: 10 There is a reason Helen Mirren is one of my favorite actresses. She can be vulnerable and powerful all in the same breath. She makes you sympathize with her character and champion for her to win. She plays Georgina, the wife of a thug. She hates her life and is longing for more. The way she expresses that longing is done in subtle fashion, yet you can feel exactly what she is feeling. There are a number of strong performances in the film, but none quite as strong as hers. Beginning: 1 I couldnâ(TM)t tell up from down when the movie started. I didnâ(TM)t know what to think, who to hate, or who to root for. That all eventually became clear, but the beginning was very muddled and had me losing hope that the movie could be good. Good thing thereâ(TM)s more to this film than the first ten minutes. Characters: 7 The title, of course, gives away the characters that dominate the story. Each character carries their own weight and adds a different value to the story. Outside of Georgina, I enjoyed watching Alan Howard act out his role of Michael the Lover. He has an air of ignorance with a touch of nobility. Heâ(TM)s a good guy that enjoys being alone, not realizing that he is looking for someone special in his life. That is, until he meets Georgina who turns his life upside down. The interactions between the two provide for a number of great scenes. And, no, Iâ(TM)m not just referring to the sex, although there are some steamy scenes. Cinematography/Visuals: 10 Conflict: 8 Genre: 8 Definitely not the best drama Iâ(TM)ve seen, but hands-down, one of the most unique. I can honestly say Iâ(TM)ve never seen anything quite like this movie. Itâ(TM)s different for a lot of reasons, but mainly in the way the film is shot which helps push the overall tone. It shines with a special kind of flare that sticks in your memory. Memorability: 8 Pace: 5 Plot: 10 Unique story with an interesting twist. I appreciate when movies try and do something different, and thatâ(TM)s where (insert long title here) succeeds. Itâ(TM)s a gut-wrenching love story told with conviction and passion. Resolution: 10 Canâ(TM)t talk about this movie without talking about that ending. Wow, what an ending! Didnâ(TM)t see it coming in the least. It was both unbelievable and gratifying at the same time. If you havenâ(TM)t heard of or seen this movie, I wonâ(TM)t ruin it for you. Iâ(TM)ll just say prepare to be pleasantly shocked. Overall: 77 A stronger beginning and a quicker pace could have made this movie excellent, but itâ(TM)s still solid enough for a one-time watch. I can guarantee you The Cook, the Thief, His Wife, and Her Lover will be unlike anything youâ(TM)ve ever seen before.

  • Jul 18, 2018

    Equal parts putrid and fascinating.

    Equal parts putrid and fascinating.