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4.2 out of 5 stars82
4.2 out of 5 stars
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I will admit from the start that I am an admirer of both Stephen Fry and Oscar Wilde, so this film is a dream come true for me. However, if you're not a fan of either, this could just be the thing to convert you.
Fry gives a simply amazing performance as Wilde, at times heartbreakingly touching; he almost makes you go through the emotions with him. Jude Law as the arrogant Bosie is quite perfect, both physically and performance-wise. Jennifer Ehle and Michael Sheen are both equally excellent, as are the rest of this great cast. In fact, I can find no fault with this film whatever, and it's one of my favourites of all time. The courtroom scene always moves me to tears without fail, and there are very few films that can do that, if any! You needn't think that it's a depressing film though, as there are always the injections of Oscar's razor sharp wit to balance the mood.
The documentary on the DVD is great too; a nice addition. But just one question: Where did the Best Actor Oscar go?
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on 16 January 2016
This is not a review for this beautiful film which deserves 5 stars. This comment regards the appalling quality of the Blu-ray release from ''Altitude Film Distribution''. To put it simply, it's an upscaled DVD with a lack of picture quality I haven't seen yet in a blu-ray world. I have old DVD release from Universal and the PQ difference is minimal. Not to mention that this is a ''barebone'' release without any extras. If I was in the movie production/distribution business I would be ashamed of such a release. Was there really any need to push for a release of such an extraordinary film and then do such a lousy job. I hope that ''Altitude Film Distribution'' did a better job with another recent interesting blu-ray release of the movie ''Tom & Viv''. I doubt it though and I'm waiting for customer reviews.

I'm returning ''Wilde'' Blu-ray immediately.
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on 6 October 2003
Having an enormous amount of respect for Stephen Fry, I watched Wilde with high expectations and I wasn't disappointed. 'Wilde' was moving and Fry played the part with a huge amount of depth; which allowed the audience to become more subjective and emotionally involved during the film. I found some of the underlying themes of family and social acceptance a little washed over. However, the film has a grown up and sombre feel, juxtaposed with humour and wit. Highly recommended.
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on 3 October 2015
This A part that only Stephen Fry could do justice to.His acting is Superb as are the players around Him,written in an intelligent and Passionate style and laced with Wildes Razor Wit,it is the perfect Biography of a Man as much troubled with his identity as He was Confident in His Manner while in the company of others.Beautiful and Deep.
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on 28 January 2016
A stunning portrayal of the bête noire of the Victorian literary scene. Stephen Fry is mesmerising in the title role as the genius whose homosexuality fell foul of the contemporary taboos, causing the breakup of his marriage and his ostracism from society: he died a pauper in exile. Fry is well supported by the other cast members and meticulous production values. The downfall of a famous figure is always moving, and the final scenes will remain long in the memory. The film is also a scathing condemnation of class divides, bigotry and intolerance; those who have seen The Imitation Game will recall the similar fate of Alan Turing, and that was within the memory of the older generation today ...
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on 10 January 2005
This is a bipoic of the great Oscar Wilde starring the wonderful Stephen Fry as the man himself amongst a star studded cast including Vanessa Redgrave and Jude Law. A thoroughly moving film about a truly inspirational man, Stephen Fry is perfect as Oscar but I would have liked even more of Wilde's gems of wisdom to have been included. Not for anyone who is easily offended by same sex love scenes!
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I have somewhat conflicting opinions about this film, just as I have conflicting opinions about Oscar Wilde himself. No one can dispute the fact that Wilde was a literary genius; ample proof of this is found in the successful rehabilitation of his work in reputation long before the aspects of his infamous lifestyle became acceptable to even a minor fraction of society. If, as hardly seems possible, you aren't aware of the scandal associated with Wilde's downfall, this film spares the viewer few of the most intimate of details (in other words, there is male nudity - and plenty of it). It's a brave film, featuring a most accomplished class of actors and actresses turning in terrific performances, but it doesn't feel perfectly complete to me. Rather than delivering a flamboyant Oscar Wilde who truly reveled in his own audacity, this Oscar Wilde seemed subdued and sometimes even haunted by the lifestyle he led. While his wit is demonstrated quite often, this didn't quite seem like the young man who became the toast of London before he met with his first literary success and reveled in the danger inherent in his forays into the London underworld of homosexuality. Maybe it's just impossible to capture the true spirit of this most singular of men, but I just felt as if this film tried to cast Wilde as something of a victim led astray by all these pretty young boys and a man doomed by his own nature, and I don't completely buy into that.

I was also somewhat disappointed by the fact that Wilde's writing played only an incidental role in this story. We don't get a very good sense of the shocking nature of The Picture of Dorian Gray to Victorian society, apart from the comments of young Lord Alfred "Bosie" Douglas (Jude Law) upon his introduction to the author, and Wilde's successful plays provide little more than short moments in the sun for Wilde to receive the cheers of appreciative audiences on opening nights. There's basically no commentary on the relationship between Wilde's writing and his life.

I don't want to sound too negative, however, as I think this is a wonderful film. Stephen Fry makes for a wonderful, albeit subdued, Oscar Wilde, but Jude Law turns in a much more memorable performance as Bosie. With his flamboyant nature, sudden mood swings between devil-may-care flamboyance and taciturn childishness, and natural coquettishness, he dominates one scene after another. Wilde, in fact, becomes something of a pathetic creature at times, a helpless instrument in the hands of a young seducer whom he must suspect will ultimately lead to his downfall and disgrace. Certainly, there was little chance of keeping this extended dalliance a protected secret, but one cannot blame Bosie's father - evil brute that he was - from seeking Wilde's destruction. The irony, of course, is that Wilde engineered his own downfall, as it was his decision to sue the Marquess of Queensberry for libel (and to thereby perjure himself in court) that led to his arrest for gross indecency.

I certainly can't admire anything about Oscar Wilde's personal life beyond his brave determination to be nothing less than who he truly was, even when that meant facing two back-breaking years of manual labor in prison. I do admire his genius, however, and I don't think there's any doubt that his exploits influenced the society of his day and age.

He helped define one era and ushered in the dawn of a new one. Most of all, he was just bloody fascinating. Any movie about his life would be noteworthy, and this one is certainly that.
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on 8 April 2009
The best representation of Oscar Wilde on screen is delivered by a genious of a man, Stephen Fry. Very good film, and excellent performances.
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on 26 January 2011
Stephen Fry gives a marvellous performance as intelligent and witty Wilde. Watching him on screen, you couldn't imagine the part being played by any other actor. An engaging and well-made historical drama.

Bear in mind that in common with many first-generation DVD releases, this is non-anamorphic and won't look good on a widescreen TV. Until a blu-ray version is released, consider the R1 release which has an anamorphic transfer, and a commentary too.
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on 12 October 2002
I am a huge fan of Oscar Wilde, and I believe that this production portrayed him perfectly. Stephen Fry is very talented, and the two are stuningly alike. Jude Law as Bosie was also very well acted out, and I found myself immersed in tears and laughter, simultaneously.
This is a must buy for anyone who loves literature, who's been inlove and hated for it, and anyone who's basically human.
0Comment9 of 12 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse