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  • PG
  • Drama, Romance
  • 1979
  • 170 mins

Tess

Tess

Synopsis

Fine but slightly un-British feeling adaptation of Hardy's novel from Roman Polanski. Natassja Kinski stars as the ill-fated country girl

About

There are quite a few things wrong with this attractive but rather shallow adaptation of Thomas Hardy's novel, 'Tess of the D'Urbervilles', the third screen version.

Although Kinski's beauty is exquisitely framed and she copes well with the characterization of the innocent country girl corrupted and discarded by polite society, her slightly German-accented English is disconcerting.

So, too, is the background as it was shot in Normandy rather than Dorset because of the extradition treaty between Britain and the USA, where Polanski was wanted on a morals charge. Still, the film won Oscars for Cinematography, Costume Design and Art Direction.

Cast & Connections

  • Actor: Peter Firth, Nastassja Kinski, David Markham, Leigh Lawson, Rosemary Martin, John Collin
  • Director: Roman Polanski
  • Screen Writer: Roman Polanski, John Brownjohn, Gérard Brach
  • Writer (Book): Thomas Hardy
  • Producer: Claude Berri
  • Photographer: Ghislain Cloquet, Geoffrey Unsworth
  • Composer: Philippe Sarde

In a nutshell

Not a high point in Polanski's career but not without its merits.

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