Friday, February 27, 2009

Don’t see it: The fine art of love

“This is one of those movies that at first glance appears to be one thing and then turns out to be something completely different. I haven’t quite figured out yet, whether or not that’s a good thing. I am rather strongly leaning towards no.

It was certainly captivating, but this film is definitely not for everyone. Why? Because you think you are going to watch a light film about a group of innocent girls at a boarding school, but instead you get sucked into quite a violent and explicit thriller.

I guess I should have been forewarned when I saw the “16” age label on the cover, because in the Netherlands we reserve that label only for the worst kind of stuff. Let me elaborate. The fine art of love is the British/Italian/Czech Republic movie from 2005 based on the book “Mine ha-ha or the physical education for girls” by German author Frank Wedekind.

It tells the story of a group of orphans at an all girls’ college that is situated in a deep and dark forest somewhere in the middle of nowhere. With the middle of nowhere I actually mean the German state Thuringia at the time of the early twentieth century, but trust me as a person who’s actually lived there I can tell you that it is pretty much the same thing.

The girls have no idea where they come from or what their lives were like before they came to the all girls’ school. In fact, they are totally clueless about what the outside world is like. As is usually the case with boarding schools like these, the girls are brought up in a very strict and sober manner.

All day long they have to attend ballet lessons as well as take etiquette classes on how to become a proper lady. They do all this in order to achieve the highest goal, namely to be picked as the prima ballerina in the big ballet production that will be performed for the prince. Over the course of this movie it becomes clear that saying the prince is worth all this effort is the understatement of the year.”

Read the entire review here.

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