Love in the Time of Cholera

Release Date: November 16, 2007

Movie of the Day for Monday, October 1, 2007
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Please don't laugh at my hair.

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126/214 Max Braden The first hour is boring but suddenly turns comic as Bardem begins his casanova life.

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Gabriel Garcia Marquez is one of the most famous and influential writers in the history of Latin America, a Nobel Prize winner who is renowned for the use of magical realism in his works, and best known for his novels One Hundred Years of Solitude and Love in the Time of Cholera. Now, the latter is getting the Hollywood treatment, as the good folks at New Line Cinemas are producing the film, which they hope will be a major player at the 2008 Oscars.

The story of Love in the Time of Cholera is extremely complicated - a common trend in Marquez’s work - and has a chronology of events that makes 21 Grams look straightforward. The focus of the story is on Juvenal Urbino (John Leguizamo) and Florentino Ariza (Javier Bardem), rivals for the love of Fermina Daza (Giovanna Mezzogiorno). The film tracks their lives over five decades as Ariza tries to win Daza from the wealthier Urbino.

The cast and crew of Love in the Time of Cholera is an eclectic bunch, but hopefully their various talents and experience working on both Hollywood blockbusters and independent art house fare will mesh well. Mike Newell, fresh off the success of directing easily the best Harry Potter film yet, The Goblet of Fire, will helm the project. Ronald Harwood, famous stage and screenwriter and Oscar winner for The Pianist wrote the script. Other than Leguizamo, a well-known Hollywood character actor, Bardem, star of Spanish dramas such as The Sea Inside and Before Night Falls (for which he was nominated for an Oscar), and Mezzogiorno, a renowned Italian film star, the cast also includes Liev Schreiber, Law and Order’s Benjamin Bratt, and Oscar nominee Catalina Sandino Moreno.

The film looks to be very promising based on the prestige of the source and talented cast and crew, and should be a contender at the Oscars this year. It seems reminiscent in style and tone to Merchant Ivory period pieces like The Remains of the Day and Howard’s End, as well as last year’s The Painted Veil. The film may get some criticism, as, despite the mostly Latin American cast and the fact that the novel is in Spanish, the film will be entirely in English. Despite these concerns, Love in the Time of Cholera will likely receive much critical acclaim, especially by the BOP staff, as any movie based on a book referenced by John Cusack in High Fidelity must be gold. (Tom Houseman/BOP)

Vital statistics for Love in the Time of Cholera
Main Cast Liev Schreiber, Laura Harring, Javier Bardem
Supporting Cast Giovanna Mezzogiorno, Catalina Sandino Moreno, Angie Cepeda, Ana Claudia Talancon, Rubria Negrao
Director Mike Newell
Screenwriter Ronald Harwood
Distributor New Line Cinema
Rating R
Talent in red has entry in The Big Picture



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