A vain London playboy offers his soul in exchange for eternal beauty in this adaptation of the chilling tale by author Oscar Wilde. Seduced into the decadent world of Lord Henry Wotton (Colin Firth), handsome young aristocrat Dorian Gray (Ben Barnes) becomes obsessed with maintaining his youthful appearance, and commissions a special portrait that will weather the winds of time while he remains forever young. When Gray's obsession spirals out of control, his desperate attempts to safeguard his secret turn his once-privileged life into a living hell.
Expectations are powerful things. I'd been led to believe that this adaptation would annoy me so much that before the halfway mark I'd slam the eject button in disgust and flick the disc skudding across the floor, later to dust it off for a charity shop donation.
Yet I enjoyed some features which irk the purists, including the use of the early 20th century for some later scenes, violence and sex more explicit than that found in the book, and most of all the obvious cruelty of Lord Henry and then of Dorian, which indeed reeked of corruption. (I very much liked the conflict and heightened emotion in the scene where news arrives of Sibyl's death.) When I used to…
Where do I even begin with this mess and a half of a film? It is an offensively bad, insulting piece of shit that takes a brilliant novel and completely exploits its message in order to have an excuse to show gratuitous nudity and violence. It severely lacks the substance and artistic merit of the source material and I seriously wonder if the makers actually read the same book as me as this is arguably one of the most inept adaptation I have ever seen.
Not even the great Colin Firth could save what is ultimately an empty, soulless and rotten "adaptation" and everyone involved, including beloved Colin, should be thoroughly ashamed of themselves. Instead of a subtle Faustian tale…
It's about time!
Oliver Parker answers the oft-wondered question, "What would 'The Picture of Dorian Gray' be like if you sucked all of Wilde's witty aestheticism out of it and turned it into a mindless thriller?".
Wonder no longer.
Better than I expected. Great performances by Colin Firth and Ben Barnes.
The Picture of Dorian Gray is my favorite book. This screen adaptation wasn't up to par. Ben certainly looked the part. As much as I adore Colin Firth, I didn't feel his performance truly captured the abhorred Lord Henry. They left out all of the original class and gender subtext that made Wilde's story so intriguing and they changed the ending! I felt robbed.
Decent drama about the classic story of a corrupted, wealthy youth who doesn't age thanks to a painting of himself.
Really the main draw for me was Colin Firth's supporting performance as the man who draws the title character to "the dark side." He has a clipped yet smug, everyman yet self-righteous delivery that made all the time he was on screen interesting. On the contrary Ben Barnes, who if you know him at all probably do so only as "Prince Caspian," was passable but certainly not as captivating.
The character development of Dorian seemed to go in fits and spurts especially in the first half: he went from a naive, good-hearted man who had recently come into money, into a manipulating and cold-hearted hedonistic playboy rather quickly. Similarly, his half-hearted turn towards becoming "good" at the end seemed shallow as well.
Not a bad watch, but if it weren't for Firth's performance this wouldn't be recommended.
Film #14 of my June 100
I'm not sure how, but the writers of this film managed to take a novel that was so self-indulgently written and make it into an utterly bland film.
I hated Sybil, Harry and the entire representation the portrait.
The only things that saved this film for me were the costumes, Ben Barne's face and the fact that I love the concept of the story.
El retrato de Dorian Gray es una nueva versión del clásico de Oscar Wilde, a diferencia de las otras versiones filmadas, trata los temas tabú de forma más abierta, pero tratándose de un `Block Buster´ (película hecha para ser un éxito en taquilla) veraniego que solo pretende vender y utiliza los temas tabú como anzuelo para los espectadores.
Algo de lo que puede presumir el film es de su acertado apartado técnico, saben utilizar el dinero donde deben, su juego de luces hace unos claroscuros bastante increíbles, sus decorados están muy bien conseguidos, la digitalización hace maravillas y le suma credibilidad a la película, te adentra en una historia bastante oscura, lástima que sus efectos especiales no estén a la…
more or less
No words... Just perfect!
I'm struggling to write about this film. All I can think to say is that it is a decent, and overall quite dark, fantasy drama. It wasn't particularly good but it definitely had an effect on me. Colin Firth's character needed more of an impact, I felt, but Ben Barnes did well to uphold a darkness to the film through his manipulating character. Some scenes captured the power his character had quite intensely but it still felt very uncaptivating at the same time.
Actually fairly enjoyable and certainly much better than I expected. I've not read Wilde's novel but I suspect this version removes much of the subtlety and subtext and ladles on the extra tittilation but despite that it's a fairly effective gothic thriller.
Ben Barnes is hilarious. Sadly it's not intended, and Dorian Gray becomes a boring, unsuspenseful movie with poor CGI, subpar acting and horrible editing.