Rolling Stone - 05/10/2002
Movieline's Hollywood Life - 07/01/2002
"...POSSESSION turns out to be a treat for literate moviegoers....It's a teasingly intellectual detective story, a taut comedy on the egotism of academics and a surprisingly affecting romance..."
Premiere - 09/01/2002
"...[LaBute] juggles the two storylines beautifully.....He's a distinctive artist whose vision just continues deepening..."
New York Times - 08/16/2002
"...An unusually smart and credible example of the genre..."
USA Today - 08/16/2002
"...Paltrow again proves her facility with an English accent....Ehle masterfully portrays the enigmatic LaMotte....Northam, who always strikes the right tone in period films, is dashing and earnest..."
Rolling Stone - 09/05/2002
"...Ehle, an actress of dazzling grace, and Northam, an actor born of Byronic romance, bring real fire to their roles..."
Variety - 08/12/2002
"...[Northam] brings an ardent spirit and considered tone to the role....The superb Ehle is the picture of 19th Century English beauty..."
Box Office - 09/01/2002
"...What LaBute has retained is his acute depiction of a complicated couple....[The writers] demonstrate a true love for the written word..."
Set in both contemporary and Victorian England, POSSESSION, directed by Neil LaBute, is based on the novel by A.S. Byatt. The tale begins with Roland Michell (Aaron Eckhart), a laid-back American studying the renowned Victorian poet Randolph Henry Ash (Jeremy Northam) on a fellowship. When Roland discovers what may be a love letter from Ash, a supposedly devoted husband, to the reclusive poet Christabel LaMotte (Jennifer Ehle), he recognizes that he's on to a big literary discovery. Enlisting the help of skeptical British academic Maud Bailey (Gwyneth Paltrow), Roland embarks on journey to discover more about the link between the two revered poets. As Roland and Maud track Ash and LaMotte's elusive romance across the British countryside, the two scholars begin a relationship of their own. Although this film presents a kinder, gentler LaBute--who is known for emotionally caustic movies such as IN THE COMPANY OF MEN and YOUR FRIENDS AND NEIGHBORS--POSSESSION still focuses on the relationships between men and women with skillful attention. Paltrow reprises her convincing British accent from films such as SHAKESPEARE IN LOVE and SLIDING DOORS, while Northam and Ehle lend gravity to their Victorian characters. However, it's Eckhart, a longtime LaBute collaborator, who proves to be the film's heart and soul; his relaxed yet complex personality grounds both the movie and its two intertwined stories. As the two tales progress, the relationships between the characters wax and wane, leading to an ending with a surprising twist.
Based On A Novel |
Theatrical release: August 16, 2002 (NY/LA) August 23, 2002 (EXPANDS) August 30, 2002 (NATIONAL)