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  • J.A.

Rebecca (2020) - Unfair to compare but it doesn't live up to the name

It is hard to remake a masterpiece. Laurence Olivier as Maxim, Joan Fontaine as Mrs. De Winter and Judith Anderson as Mrs. Danvers with Alfred Hitchcock directing - delivered a triumph of two Oscars and nine nominations.

This should have signaled to everyone concerned that any rendition will fall short. Unfortunately Netflix gambled wrong on this one, however, Lily James is a joy to watch as Mrs. De Winter and manages to make the otherwise lackluster movie interesting. Director Ben Wheatley brings us a cleaner, more rational version of the novel, while Armie Hammer misses the depth that the 1940 version cast in his place, Laurence Olivier. To compare Hammer to one of the best actors of all time is quite unfair, however Hammer's performance doesn't give the character of Maxim a chance to breathe in the nuances needed.

The same goes for Kristin Scott Thomas' performance of Mrs. Danvers, although, again its hard to live up to one of the most iconic performances (by Judith Anderson) in cinematic history.


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