Miss Julie (2014) Poster

(2014)

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10/10
Compelling Performances of brilliant writing
jersey-lion7 May 2015
Warning: Spoilers
(possibly Mild Spoilers) I am not a fan of Chastain at all, but she was well cast with the ethereal elegance she brings to Julie's madness, her seeming lucidity only when she is growling and snarling in anger and frustration at John (Farrell). Farrell is a chimera of resentment, hope, sociopath behavior and tender confession. He moves from trying to stop the disaster he foresees, to active participant and then tries to deny his own desires. When he finally agrees to take Julie, to make a run for a new life with her, she cannot let go of the bird that represents herself, her privileged life... And the symbolism of John's response is brilliant; Farrell displays the complicated emotions at war with each other that his character feels with astonishing depth. Morton was brilliantly solid, her understated portrayal of the character making Kathleen all the more real amidst the madness.

Unlike other critics, I found the "opening up" of the play into other areas and venues to be done very well. We step into Julie's 'garden' which is really as much in her mind as real, it's her view of life as she'd have it be. Kathleen is equally trapped as Cook and then in the small rooms of the house, as she is in her existence. Only John, who can see better things for his life, moves freely throughout the house, as he wants to do between the classes of Irish society.

The incredible depth of human psychology, the love hate relationships with each other, their own lives, the class system, is explored both in action, dialogue, and in the settings chosen for each part of the play. The viewer feels both sympathy and revulsion for the characters in turn. The nuances that these three actors brought to the characters, and the narrow focus of the film over the play, add to the intensity.
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10/10
Survival of the fittest
gradyharp10 May 2015
Warning: Spoilers
August Strindberg wrote his play MISS JULIE in 1888 and while it is often performed today by classical repertory companies, the story is strong and deserves the very frank and stage-like production that brilliant actress Liv Ullmann brings to the screenplay adaptation and directs with a sure hand.

The story is set on Midsummer's Eve on the estate of a Count in Fermanagh, Ireland. Miss Julie (Jessica Chastain in a brilliant performance), the young woman of the title, is drawn to a senior servant, a valet named Jean (Colin Farrell also quite brilliant), who is particularly well traveled, well mannered and well read. The action takes place in the kitchen of Miss Julie's father's manor, where Jean's fiancée, a servant named Kathleen (Samantha Morton), cooks and sometimes sleeps while Jean and Miss Julie talk. On this night the relationship between Miss Julie and Jean escalates rapidly to feelings of love and is subsequently consummated. Over the course of the story Miss Julie and Jean battle until Jean convinces her that the only way to escape her predicament is to commit suicide.

While the acting and cinematography and production values are excellent, the aspect of Liv Ullmann's emphasis on Strindberg's reason for committing this work to the public – as one historian phrased it well, 'Miss Julie and Jean, as vying against each other in an evolutionary "life and death" battle for a survival of the fittest. The character, Miss Julie, represents the last of an old aristocratic breed about to die out. Whereas Jean represents one who is clambering upwards, and who is more fit to thrive because he is better able to adapt in terms of the "life roles" he can take on. The play contains a variety of themes, partly because Miss Julie's actions are motivated by a range of factors and influences: her class, her desires and impulsive nature, her father, and the dynamic traumas of her family histories.'

The musical score is brilliant – various combinations of violin, cello and piano with works by Schubert and Bach performed by Håvard Gimse, piano, Truls Mørk, cello and Arve Tellefsen, violin. The music is an integral part of the atmosphere. Highly Recommended. Grady Harp, May 15
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10/10
Brilliant.
eyeintrees9 June 2015
Jessica Chastain and Colin Farrell are superb. Although the critics seem to hate this movie, lauding it to be nothing like they imagined the play to be, nonetheless, having not ever seen the play or read it, I had nothing to base my preconceived ideas on. Therefore, this was something of a masterpiece. Incredible performances from the actors, painful, and actually a treatise to the hideous mores and codes of its times, despite being adapted by Liv Ullman, the over-riding theme is astonishing when you discover that the original play was written in 1888, and depicts the absurdities of human belief systems and caste systems. In this day and age, they would have had a rollick one night, said goodbye and avoided each other's eyes in the hallway whilst getting the heck on with their lives! A story of a very lonely, overly sensitive young woman who has no idea what life is about, and the sanctimonious serving maid who thinks that Jesus will save her, and how ultimately, a poor boy has a turmoil of stored hatred and vindictiveness toward the gentry, albeit rightly so, yet turns that into a crime that is inconceivable. An utterly brilliant work. Kudos to Liv Ullman. If you want action, no dialogue, and joy, this movie might not be for you. But if you want to take a good, long look at how evil the natural function of humanity is made by an unnatural society, this is a winner.
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6/10
Play
kosmasp2 September 2015
I'm not familiar with the source material, but the movie version of it, will not be everyones cup of tea. It feels like a drag and the pacing is slow to say the least. The characters seem to be stuck at a place where it'll be hard to feel something for them. Having said all that, the acting is superb and if you like your drama to be slow paced, but filled with dialog to make you think about, this could be exactly the one you were looking for.

It never did have the punch or the feeling that it could be something great to me, but that's always in the eye of the beholder and might feel different for people who know more about it (more familiar with source material) than myself. It also feels like it is way too long for its own good. While good, there are things that make this tough to watch ...
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2/10
How to Kill Strindberg
Cary_Barney1 February 2015
Liv Ullman gets just about everything wrong in her slow, heavy, inert adaptation of "Miss Julie." The play needs white hot intensity; she kills its momentum with portentous silences. It needs the claustrophobia of its kitchen setting; she dissipates this by "opening it up" as you're supposedly required to do when filming plays, taking it down corridors and outdoors. It needs an atmosphere of raucous midsummer revelry right outside the windows, with the revelers at one point invading the kitchen; she lets us hear them, briefly, but otherwise the three characters seem to be the last people on earth. Instead of merry folk dancing, which provides an ironic counterpoint in the original, we get a string trio playing tasteful Schubert adagios. Jessica Chastain is well cast and, when allowed to come to life, very good, as is Samantha Morton, but Colin Farrell is misdirected; his Jean ("John" in this version) lacks the charm and sardonic humor that would make the character compelling. For no good reason the play is relocated to Ireland, a setting Ullmann makes no use of. (I guess it's to justify the actors' brogues.) Strindberg sets a clock going right from the start, so that the proceedings carry tremendous urgency; Ullman drains all the tension out of it so it plods drearily. The worst thing you can do in adapting any work is drape it in the deadening mantle of a "classic." There's nice decor, costumes and cinematography to gaze at, but don't let this be your introduction to Strindberg's electrifying play.
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Powerhouse work from Jessica Chastain
Red_Identity5 February 2015
I had never seen her be this loud, this unabashedly theatrical. But, the character calls for it, and it all somehow works. Farrell doesn't have to go as big, and yet he's the one that comes across as unconvincing. The film only really comes alive when it gives Chastain the space to be as loud as humanly possible. It's not a terrible film, but it just seems like an excuse for such powerhouse acting showcasing, and in that respect it's tremendously glorious to witness Chastain's work. It could've easily gone off the rails with many actresses, but she still manages to surprise me in what she can achieve. Again, it worked for me, but it won't for everyone. Several people will absolutely loathe her (really, any performance of this nature is bound to) but I can honestly say she is probably better here than in Rigby, if only because the material allows it. In that way it's a hard performance to analyze, it's basically "here, watch Chastain ACT!" without really caring if we get the character. But it worked for the 2 hours, mostly.
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7/10
Beautiful, Fragile & A Mess Of Contradictions.
timdalton00731 August 2015
Warning: Spoilers
From the works of William Shakespeare to more modern works, stage plays have always provided a rich source of material for filmmakers. August Strindberg's 1888 play Miss Julie has apparently been a particularity rich source, having been adapted for the screen more than a dozen times in little more than a century. While not being overly familiar with the play, and perhaps drawn more by the actors than the source material, I recently sat down to take in the latest film version of the play and discovered an interesting, if often contradictory piece of work.

On the surface, the film is well acted. There's only really three performers in the whole film: Jessica Chastain as the title character, Colin Farrell as the valet John and Samantha Morton as the maid Katherine who is also John's finance. Chastainis perfect casting as Miss Julie, the daughter of a wealthy baron sitting at home alone on a midsummer's night in 1890 who finds her fragile little world thrown into chaos. If there's any reason to watch the film it's Chastain who, with her red hair and green eyes standing out against her blue dress, goes on a remarkable emotional journey between extremes of happiness and sadness, authority and submissiveness, maturity and childishness, quiet contemplation and fits of anger before realizing that she is ultimately trapped by the world and situation she finds herself in. In a way, Chastain's performance sums up the entire film: beautiful, fragile and a mess of contradictions.

Then there's Farrell and Morton. Of the trio, Farrell is the weakest in that his acting often seems forced rather than natural, making him at odds with his co-stars. Mot to mention an Irish brogue so thick you'll likely have to turn on subtitles to understand it which rather undermines the refined air that the character tries to put on and is meant to have (though that might be a deliberate move, it's hard to tell). That said, there's an undeniable chemistry between him and Chastain that makes their lengthy and at times unlikely encounters interesting to watch. Morton, the member of the trio with the least amount of screen time, comes across as an often silent and appalled witness to the events unfolding around her. It's her quiet, understated performance that makes for a wonderful contrast with the sometimes explosive performance Chastain gives. Together, they make for an interesting group of performers who bring the film to life.

What makes their performances interesting is the script, adapted from the original play. Ultimately all three of these characters go on the same journey and discover the same thing: that despite whatever actions they may take they're ultimately trapped in the world and roles they find themselves in. What they do with that fact is what defines them. There's more to it than that of course as sparks fly in not only a battle of class but also of the sexes as each tries to gain the upper-hand over the other with consequences that ultimately prove both disastrous and that have an almost tragic inevitability to them. Even as character's bounce back and forth between emotional extremes, it somehow seems believable under the circumstances as roles are reversed and hearts both laid bare and broken in the space of a single night. The results are incredible to watch...at times.

Which brings us to the production. The direction of Liv Ullmann, and the editing of Michal Leszczylowski, has the film unfold not with the white-hot intensity suggested by the dialogue or indeed the performances often suggest. Instead, the film unfolds slowly, never really building up momentum as it takes the viewer on its two hour journey. It's something that turns what could have been a fascinating, well paced drama into one that is as often infuriatingly static despite the emotions and tension building up between the characters. Making up for that is the film's visuals in the form of some beautiful cinematography from Mikhail Krichman as well as the sets and costumes of Mikhail Krichman and Consolata Boyle respectively. It's the combination of their work, and some gorgeous shots of the Irish countryside that makes the film visually interesting to watch when the direction and editing undermine performances. Yet they can't save the film from being at times the one thing it shouldn't be: dull.

What are we to make of the film then? There's beautiful visuals and performances, including some of Chastain's best work to date in a career full of memorable performances. Yet the film is also treated with a fragility that at times undermines the drama unfolding within it as well as those aforementioned elements. It's an emotional drama that is played in a fashion that is contradictory to its nature and renders it at times utterly dull. In the end, the film is perhaps too much like its title character: beautiful, fragile and a mess of contradictions.
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5/10
A Battle of Wills?
cnycitylady22 September 2015
Warning: Spoilers
Miss Julie is a very compelling piece, that cannot be denied. The small, confined setting allows for this epic problem to play out in the most stressful way possible. And the performances by both Jessica Chastain and Colin Farrell are powerful in all of their subtlety and rancor. The two characters are always perfect juxtapositions; one with their innocence and the other with their malice. But which character is which? This is never made clear as they both seem to jump into one of the roles and back again. This leaves you more confused with the arguments that follow and the events that take place, and with questions that will forever remain unanswered.

The problem that is the catalyst of the story isn't even, in my opinion, the act that takes place halfway through the film. No. In fact I believe it is the simple explanation that Farrell's character gives Chastain about love. Those conversations are dangerous at the best of times, and this just happened to be the worst of times. He bewildered her at a time of innocence, and whether he was sincere or not is irrelevant. The blow was struck. The two then panic and bounce between what they should do after the fact, both trying to lay blame on the other, neither realizing that it takes two to tango.

You cannot help but pick a side while watching. Someone, whether it was him or her, had to be the responsible one; Had to know when to stop. But neither did, and so someone must take on the role of the villain, because the world is black and white. At the end the loser is left to his somewhat cruel fate while the "winner" is left to bask in his victory and shy away from the guilt that will never truly relinquish him of his part in the role. The characters search for absolution the entire time, and even when they they've found it, they will not be completely absolved.

For all of the power in this filmed play, I have to say that I didn't like the material or the characters. Sexism, hatred, and sleaze take center stage and leave all who are involved considerably diminished. The ending will infuriate anyone with a soul and leave you questioning the way society works. 5/10
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4/10
Painfully boring
killerqueen-7039529 November 2017
I kept searching for a reason to care about these people and what they're going through. "It's a classic." "View it in the context of the time." Nothing. Nothing worked. A lot of the problem is how it was shot. At least on stage you can choose to watch the other character's reaction. But here, Ullmann keeps cutting to the person who is speaking, rarely cutting away. The repetitive style does not build tension, but monotony. Even great acting couldn't save it.
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1/10
Terrible!! Terrible!! Terrible!!
redkrypto-1665912 November 2017
Warning: Spoilers
I'm not going to waste a bunch of your time. My wife and I watched this on Netflix and both agree it was ridiculously, over-the-top, terrible. It is as if they wanted to make the worst movie in movie making history and hit a home run. Bravo!! Trust me, no matter how bored you are it's not bad enough to watch this piece of crap. Go outside, go for a walk, throw a ball around with your kid, pop a game in the X Box, lay on a bed of nails, smash your head against a wall until you pass out... do anything except waste two hours of your life on this piece of garbage. Know that you have been warned and I feel like I have done my good deed for the day. Gotta go wash my eyes out with soap now and do what I can to unsee this thing!! Wish there were a zero star option!
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6/10
Miss Julie double-bill, 1951 Vs. 2014
lasttimeisaw14 November 2015
It's double-bill time, two movie adaptations of MISS JULIE, August Strinberg's play written in 1888, with 63 years apart. The 1951 version is made by Strinberg's fellow Swedish countryman, Alf Sjöberg. Shot in dashing Black and White, Sjöberg's film stars Anita Björk and Ulf Palme as the central pair, Miss Julie, the daughter of a Count (Henrikson) and her servant Jean, during the mid-summer night, they test the limit of seduction, passion and dignity between two incompatible classes, it shared the prestigious Grand Prize in Cannes with Vittorio De Sica's MIRACLE IN MILAN (1951).

Empowered by an impactful score from Dag Wirén, the film conjures up the pair's gender-and- class tug-of-war with a phantasmagoria of sequences narrating their dreams and past. The desire for falling versus an ambition of climbing from different starting tier concretes Julie and Jean as perfect specimens to explore their moral and emotional clashes. Outstanding cinematography creates amazing shots where flashback merges together with the present, imagination coexists with the reality. There is no win-win situation in the battle of sex, Miss Julie's paradoxical attempt to patronise her servant and at the same time to be sexually overtaken by him is a self-digging grave for her own undoing, and Jean's struggle between his sexual impulse and deep-rooted inferiority complex is the last nail on her coffin.

Anita Björk embodies a graceful mien of nobility emitting a whiff of recalcitrance that makes her portrayal of Miss Julie a distant, spoiled figure never truly reveals her true emotions, whereas Ulf Palme delicately betrays his insecurity and immaturity out of his pseudo-confidence and prince-charmant appearance. Among the supporting cast, Dorff's Kristin, the cook, takes a less prominent function than Morton in the 2014 film, and we also see a very young Max von Sydow giggling in his plain nature. Overall, this vintage oldie is a pleasant discovery, especially compared to the more lyrical but problematic latest version directed by the acting legend Liv Ullmann.

With a running time around 130 minutes (contrast with 89 minutes of Sjöberg's picture), but maximally axing the bit parts with three characters only (save the two-minutes opening sequence showing a young Julie rollicking in the forest), Miss Julie (Chastain), the butler John (Farrell) and Kathleen the cook (Morton), this austere version is set in Ireland, and is much more loyal to the text's original form with its take-no-prisoners' method to let the acting-trio wrangling in the turmoil with lengthy monologues and dialogues. It is a chancy choice, Ullmann invests a full trust in her cast, and is willing to take the risk of prolonging the takes to let the emotional repercussions permeate, even music is barely used as an immediate mood-mediator, only at times playing in the background with unobtrusive volume.

"The night is long and it is so tiring", the film becomes tedious as the same plot and twist blathering on and on; and "class is class", the invisible barrier strips them down to their inveterate bias and beliefs. However, the trio's whole-hearted devotion is the saving grace of Ullmann's labour-of-love. Morton, her Kathleen becomes a morally righteous yardstick to the scandalous affair, John is her beau, and Miss Julie is her mistress, her inward feeling is given a more detailed vent to show off, and Morton is always excellent to watch, modest in looks, but tremendously engaging. Farrell, portrays a quite different character from Palme, his John is more approachable to read, more pliable to manipulate, also more reprehensible to condemn for his cowardice, the explicit canary-murdering scene makes him more like a perpetrator than a foolish social-climber in the end.

Chastain stands at odds with Farrell and Morton's Irish accent, but her mercurial personae are wondrous to stare, this could be a tour-de-force if it was on stage, yet as a film, her labour (the same can to said to Farrell and Morton) cannot redeem the sluggish rhythm and a length overstays its welcome, in a sense, only true savant of stage play can luxuriate in it, for most people, the 1951 version is more superior.
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6/10
Tragic, Beautiful, and Disappointing
SloaneWasHere14 March 2016
Warning: Spoilers
Not having seen the play or being familiar with the story, I was expecting a romantic and sexually charged period piece as that's what the trailer implied. What I saw was a mentally ill woman being 'taken advantage of' (to put it mildly) by a man out to avenge his brother's death by playing mind games with her and ultimately absolving himself of any responsibility by encouraging her to take her own life. I was not prepared for a tragedy, and it left a sour feeling. The acting was intense and well done, the dialogue was poetic at times, and Colin's 'John' was a spot-on manipulating character. Jessica was outstanding in portraying existential pain and desperation to be free of it. It was painful to watch - which I'm sure is the point - but I would have appreciated knowing before watching that this is ultimately a tragedy and not -as labeled- a romance.
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1/10
What's the point?
dtdenver-987-92554615 January 2018
Movies based on plays often have a particular - peculiar - feel. They take place in one or two rooms. There are only 2 or 3 castmembers. It takes places over the space of a few hours. Now - if you're riveted by that sort of microscopic examination of 3 characters' neuroses on one L-O-N-G night, then you'll LOVE this movie. If you're the type who would say, "Yeesh, get over yourselves already!" you'll hate it. The pointlessness of this is astounding - but I'm not big on watching train wreck personalities.
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4/10
We fast-forwarded to the good parts
jordan224031 December 2017
The actors put their hearts and souls into this, but my wife and I found ourselves so bored with the toiling dialog about 30 minutes in that we just started to fast-forward until it looked like (via the frames at the bottom of the screen - thanks Netflix) something might actually be happening. Some of the emotion was laughably over-the-top, and the film was simply way too long. Not being familiar with the play, I have no idea how the film compares, but for me, the relationship between the two main characters in the film needed some background information to pull the viewer in. As presented, you wondered what drew the two together, as they seem to have no chemistry. I would give a higher review simply to reward the effort of the performers, but that would skew the score upward, and I don't think the film itself deserves it. Obviously, would not recommend.
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A boring film
Gordon-1110 July 2015
This film tells the story of the daughter of a baron, and her valet in the mansion, who tempts and manipulates each other on the night that the baron is away.

The film only has three actors, set in a single location. The story concentrates on the dynamics of the three individuals in the mansion, and the balance of power constantly changes. It reminds me of other similar films such as "Carnage" starring Kate Winslet. I am not a fan of this kind of film, because the fundamental flaw of such a plot is that characters can withdraw themselves from the situation, but they just stay on a forebears spiral until everyone is hurt. If not for the big names in "Miss Julie", I would not have even watched it It's a boring film.
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5/10
Just OK
Beththebest8913 December 2018
I'd have to agree with a few others- the acting is brilliant (I'd expect nothing else from this bunch) and the idea is there, but the pacing was painfully slow (no, I do NOT prefer action movies over dramas and yes, I LOVE period pieces). Even though it's over two hours long, I didn't feel connected to any character, which I believe is because of how it was filmed, not the actors, because again, they were committed and believable. All in all, not a total waste of time, but I won't be watching it again and will likely forget about it fairly soon.
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You really need to like long conversations about nothing in particular to enjoy this movie.
TxMike21 September 2015
Warning: Spoilers
I found this one on Netflix streaming movies. I like all the actors and each does a fine job with their roles.

However I don't care for the movie. It is well-made for what it is, an adaptation of a stage play. But save the very last scene (after SPOILERS below) nothing at all happens. It is a morality play. They talk, for very long periods of the film, trading ideas on life, engaging in some word-play, but nothing happens.

Jessica Chastain is Miss Julie in 1890s Ireland. She seems spoiled and abuses her power over the service staff. Nothing serious just orders them around for her own amusement. She isn't a very nice person.

Colin Farrell is John, the master's valet. He is a good, honest, level-headed person who seems to have a nice attachment and relationship with Samantha Morton as Kathleen the cook and kitchen manager. But Julie seems determined to get John to seduce her and he has to delicately balance saying 'no' with not being insubordinate. He didn't want to lose his job and he doesn't want to alienate Kathleen.

I am certain that there is an audience for this movie but it is not me. The actors are good but the movie uses 2+ hours to tell a 20-minute story.

SPOILERS: At the end when it became obvious that Julie was not going to get her way, at the same time realizing what a shallow and messed up person she is, she walks out to the back of the estate, reposes at a stream, and kills herself, we see red blood flowing to fill the stream with color.
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4/10
Not Recommended
Hecate-311 May 2017
Warning: Spoilers
I have now seen Colin Farrell in a lead role in two very different films. In both, he gave a ludicrously histrionic performance. In both, the director either made changes to the source material or arranged the accents of the entire cast to accommodate Farrell's thick brogue. In both, a director with considerable talent produced a muddled film with poor characterization and what should be a riveting plot that drags interminably towards a foregone conclusion. Fans of both films try to turn the criticism of detractors back onto them with blanket statements about what kinds of movies they must not like and what sorts of shallow entertainment they must prefer.

Taking the last point first, I have seen movies before that were nothing more than filmed plays with a cast of only two people in a single location, so even more limited than Miss Julie in those respects. Those movies had even more dialogue and less action than Miss Julie. Those movies were also every bit as grim and depressing as Miss Julie. But those films had quality dialogue, consistent characterizations, and a story worth investment.

I am flabbergasted by the unyielding support of Colin Farrell's fans, but then I'm flabbergasted that he has any fans at all. In addition to having no perceivable acting talent and an accent that he can't seem to shake, despite his character John's comments to Miss Julie about understanding her attraction to him, Farrell isn't even particularly good-looking and has no charisma on screen. On looking up his listings on IMDb, I discovered that he had the lead role in another film I have seen; I do not recall that he ruined that particular film, but then I don't recall much about him from that film even though he was the lead. I have certainly seen no reason to believe he deserves even his limited fame.

Many people have criticized the direction in Miss Julie for poor pacing, but a good deal of the problem is in the writing before it ever got to the set. Although I am unfamiliar with the source material, I gather from comments and reviews I have read that certain key pieces of dialogue were left out of the screenplay, namely the servants' discussion of Julie's broken engagement and the menstrual period which are brought up as explanations for her erratic behavior. I don't know what other dialogue changes might have been made, but both Julie's and John's mood and behavior swing so wildly between various extremes, much of the time with no discernible explanation, that it's almost as though with each exchange, the writers rolled some dice to select the characters' moods that time. Even erratic characters need to be comprehensible. It doesn't help matters much that the characterization that does come through the constantly shifting, random moods are two people capable of appallingly cold selfishness while the remaining character turns out to be someone inflexibly judgmental and narrow-minded.

Despite a costar who tries to destroy most of his scenes, Jessica Chastain and Samantha Morton deliver strong performances. Morton is understated but powerful while Chastain portrays desperation that grows so deep it becomes painful to watch, most notably in the scene where she proposes that all three of them leave together.

** SPOILERS **

I know that the story was written in Victorian times when convenient character death was seen as valid plotting, but I wonder how many modern viewers understand that Miss Julie's situation need not have been as hopeless as a melodramatic maiden raised on romances seemed to think. Even after the loss of her virginity in those restrictive times, a beautiful young woman who is the daughter of a wealthy baron could probably still make some sort of match with an impoverished but ambitious gentleman or with an older gentleman. Even if she turned out to be pregnant, she could have been sent to a convent far from the public eye to have her child. She might have to take orders to hide her disgrace, but she did not need to commit suicide. It's also worth remembering that this story was written and set in a time when the church was inflexibly condemning of suicide, no matter what the reason. Suicides weren't even buried in hallowed ground. It's hard to see John's willingness to prod Julie in that direction as anything other than a man willing to manipulate a young woman into needlessly taking her own life in order to spare himself inconvenience. As bad as Julie showed herself to be from her first scenes, John turned out to be far worse.

In the end, the film turned into a horror movie, and although it's undeniably a cut above standard slasher flicks, it does not reach the level of meaningful classic to which it aspires. Worth watching for the two female leads but otherwise not recommended.
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1/10
Yawn
dawn_carden21 June 2019
I had to stop watching as I was lulled into sleep. I do wish I had the large kitchen island.
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3/10
A beautiful trainwreck
emily-elizabeth-arthur3 February 2019
Tragic and heartbreaking. Or it should be. Despite the terrific acting and gorgeous set I couldn't feel anything for these characters.
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5/10
play for theater
SnoopyStyle19 September 2018
It's 1890 Ireland. The people are out for the Midsummer Night's Eve celebration. John (Colin Farrell) is a valet at a country estate. He's in love with the cook Kathleen (Samantha Morton). While the Baron is away, his daughter Miss Julie (Jessica Chastain) is the mistress of the manor. She keeps pushing herself onto John despite his relationship with Kathleen.

This is a 19th century Swedish play put on the big screen. It's got three great actors who are bringing their all to this thing, accents aside. While these actors are trying their best, the movie is mostly empty inside. There is nothing more than a play being thrown onto the big screen. The characters don't get much set up. It's hard to get inside the morality of the times. It's hard to feel for these characters. There are things lost in translation in time and space. One can admire the acting but it's hard to care about this movie.
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