HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
 
Newest Reviews
For the Sake of Vicious
Hell Bent
Straight Shooting
Jules Verne's Rocket to the Moon
Man They Could Not Hang, The
Final Days
Frightened City, The
Assimilate
Sequin in a Blue Room
Common Crime, A
Into the Labyrinth
Power, The
Wake of Death
Night Orchid
Mortal
Iron Mask, The
Dinosaur
Personal History of David Copperfield, The
Dove, The
Collective
Charulata
Minari
Violation
Defending Your Life
Champagne Murders, The
He Dreams of Giants
Lost in America
Take Back
Honeydew
Banishing, The
Drifters, The
Gushing Prayer
Escape from Coral Cove
Swan Princess, The
Shortcut
Stray
Butterfly Murders, The
Pimp
Feedback
Lady is a Square, The
   
 
Newest Articles
Meiko Kaji's Girl Gangs: Stray Cat Rock on Arrow
Having a Wild Weekend: Catch Us If You Can on Blu-ray
The Drifters: Star Lucie Bourdeu Interview
Meiko Kaji Behind Bars: Female Prisoner Scorpion on Arrow
The Horror of the Soviets: Viy on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Tarka the Otter and The Belstone Fox
Network Double Bills: All Night Long and Ballad in Blue
Chew Him Up and Spit Him Out: Romeo is Bleeding on Blu-ray
British Body Snatchers: They Came from Beyond Space on Blu-ray
Bzzzt: Pulse on Blu-ray
The Tombs Will Be Their Cities: Demons and Demons 2 on Arrow
Somebody Killed Her Husband: Charade on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Maroc 7 and Invasion
Network Double Bills: The Best of Benny Hill and The Likely Lads
Network Double Bills: Some Girls Do and Deadlier Than the Male
Absolutely Bananas: Link on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Hawk the Slayer and The Medusa Touch
The Price of Plague: The Masque of the Red Death on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Seance on a Wet Afternoon and Ring of Spies
Chaney Chillers: Inner Sanctum Mysteries - The Complete Film Series on Blu-ray
Adelphi Extras: Stars in Your Eyes on Blu-ray
Toons for the Heads: Fantastic Planet and Adult Animation
Nature Girl: The New World on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Perfect Friday and Robbery
Network Double Bills: The House in Nightmare Park and The Man Who Haunted Himself
   
 
  Name of the Rose, The The Booklovers
Year: 1986
Director: Jean-Jacques Annaud
Stars: Sean Connery, Christian Slater, F. Murray Abraham, Helmut Qualtinger, Elya Baskin, Michael Lonsdale, Volker Prechtel, Feodor Chaliapin Jr, William Hickey, Michael Habeck, Urs Althaus, Valentina Vargas, Ron Perlman, Leopoldo Trieste, Vernon Dobtcheff
Genre: Thriller, HistoricalBuy from Amazon
Rating:  7 (from 3 votes)
Review: The year is 1327 and in a Benedictine abbey somewhere in the mountains of Italy a mysterious death has occured. Entering the scene are a Franciscan monk, William of Baskerville (Sean Connery), and his young apprentice, Adso of Melk (Christian Slater), who are planning to attend a meeting of their order there concerned with the legitimacy of the wealth of the church. However, they are soon drawn into solving the death of the monk who was found at the bottom of the hill the abbey is built upon; some of the resident monks believe the only explanation rests with the Devil himself. Yet William knows otherwise...

Umberto Eco wrote The Name of the Rose half a decade before the film version made it to the screen, and many of the novel's fans were sceptical that director Jean-Jacques Annaud and his team would be able to do its intricacies justice, but after they saw it they were forced to agree that while it might not have indulged in all that description (there is a narrator but he is used sparingly) it undoubtedly captured the look of it even if the plot was altered and smoothed over. Among the adapters were Andrew Birkin and regular Roman Polanski collaborator GĂ©rard Brach, and they remained sympathetic to the period and, what everyone recalls, the outright grotesquerie.

Few of the actors cast as monks here are candidates for oil paintings - although one, Urs Althaus, was a male model in real life - and these oddballs are what makes the atmosphere distinctively, historically alien. That, and some authentic-looking set design which places the characters in dank and inhospitable surroundings, while still allowing us to be aware that these conditions were luxurious compared to the peasant population's dwellings, some of which are dotted around the hill as they live on the scraps the monks deign to let them survive upon.

It is into this world that William does his best Sherlock Holmes and Connery, at first glance an eccentric choice for the role, really inhabits the habit, proving an inspired selection as he brings out the monk's wisdom, humour and intellect far above that of the majority of his peers, although even he has his limitations, as we find out that he has been a victim of the dreaded Inquisition in years past, and has regretted giving in to them ever since. It is his progressive qualities that render The Name of the Rose not an attack on religion, but a skewering of bad religion, and the star was rarely better in emphasising this theme.

In fact, so clever is William that he almost appears to be a man out of time, and he practically solves the mystery at the halfway mark of the story, leaving the rest of the film to concentrate on the arrival of the corrupt and tyrannical Bernardo Gui (F. Murray Abraham) who intends to come up with his own solution to the crimes as the dead bodies mount up. It is all somehow connected to the library and a secret collection of books, a matter which is very dear to William's heart as he is a huge promoter of the benefits of learning, as Adso discovers under his tutelage. Along with the message that enough information can set you free intellectually and perhaps even spiritually, there's the point that men existing without women can go steadily mad as the monks' piety has sent them round the bend. Adso, at least, finds out the benefits of female company, even if he has to give it up by the poignant conclusion. If The Name of the Rose falls short of classic, it does provide food for thought and novel thrills. Music by James Horner.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 3441 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star probably has psychic powers?
Laurence Fishburne
Nicolas Cage
Anya Taylor-Joy
Patrick Stewart
Sissy Spacek
Michelle Yeoh
Aubrey Plaza
Tom Cruise
Beatrice Dalle
Michael Ironside
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Andrew Pragasam
Darren Jones
Enoch Sneed
  Paul Tuersley
  Chris Garbutt
  Sdfadf Rtfgsdf
Stately Wayne Manor
   

 

Last Updated: