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The Bostonians Academy Award Nomination! Academy Award Nomination! 

By Jeff Shannon

Before their breakthrough successes with A Room with a View, Howards End, and The Remains of the Day, the Merchant-Ivory filmmaking team refined their literary adaptation skills with this 1984 drama, adapted from the classic novel by Henry James. Although the film can only begin to approximate the internal dialogues that make up much of James's fascinating fiction, it retains the central conflict of the post-Civil War drama, which takes place just as women are beginning their struggle for equality. The story involves a triangle of conflicting relationships, in which a repressed lesbian (Vanessa Redgrave) engages in a subtle, unspoken tug-of-war with a Southern lawyer (Christopher Reeve) for the affections of a young woman (Madeleine Potter) who is just coming into her own as a young suffragette. Although the film is slow and dry compared to Merchant-Ivory's later efforts, it's eminently respectable (as you might expect) and is highlighted by Redgrave's superb, Oscar-nominated performance as the story's feminist heroine. The supporting cast is equally impressive, and includes Jessica Tandy, Linda Hunt, Wallace Shawn, and Wesley Addy.

Academy Awards

The Bostonians received Academy Awards nominations for Actress (Vanessa Redgrave), Costume Design (Jenny Beavan, John Bright) .

 

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FILM FACTS

Buy this VHS movie from Amazon.com! (Click here!)Buy this DVD from Amazon.com! (Click here!)Soundtrack unavailable at Amazon.com - try eBay (see links below)Not RatedNot on an American Film Institute 100 list

Director: James Ivory

Stars: Christopher Reeve, Vanessa Redgrave, Madeleine Potter, Jessica Tandy, Nancy Marchand, Wesley Addy, Linda Hunt, Wallace Shawn

Released: August 2, 1984

Availability: DVD VHS


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