Director(s): Jocelyn Moorhouse
IMDB Rating: 5.9
A THOUSAND ACRES is a drama about an American family who meets with tragedy on their land. It is the story of a father, his daughters, and their husbands, and their passion to subdue the history of their land and its stories.
|A Thousand Acres (iPod)||Resolution: 480x256 px||Total Size: 156 Mb||
|A Thousand Acres (iPod)||Resolution: 480x256 px||Total Size: 149 Mb||
|A Thousand Acres (DVD)||Resolution: 720x372 px||Total Size: 612 Mb|
|A Thousand Acres (DVD)||Resolution: 720x372 px||Total Size: 608 Mb|
oskie-1 (17 May 2013)
When I unsuspectedly rented A Thousand Acres, I thought I was in for anentertaining King Lear story and of course Michelle Pfeiffer was in it, sowhat could go wrong?Very quickly, however, I realized that this story was about A ThousandOtherThings besides just Acres. I started crying and couldn't stop until longafter the movie ended. Thank you Jane, Laura and Jocelyn, for bringing ussuch a wonderfully subtle and compassionate movie! Thank you cast, forbeing involved and portraying the characters with such depth andgentleness!I recognized the Angry sister; the Runaway sister and the sister inDenial.I recognized the Abusive Husband and why he was there and then the Father,oh oh the Father... all superbly played. I also recognized myself andthismovie was an eye-opener, a relief, a chance to face my OWN truth andfinallydoing something about it. I truly hope A Thousand Acres has had the sameeffect on some others out there.Since I didn't understand why the cover said the film was about sistersfighting over land -they weren't fighting each other at all- I watched itasecond time. Then I was able to see that if one hadn't lived a similarstory, one would easily miss the overwhelming undercurrent of dread andfearand the deep bond between the sisters that runs through it all. That isexactly the reason why people in general often overlook the truth abouttheir neighbors for instance.But yet another reason why this movie is so perfect!I don't give a rat's ass (pardon my French) about to what extend the KingLear story is followed. All I know is that I can honestly say: this moviehas changed my life.Keep up the good work guys, you CAN and DO make a difference.
djbenton-1 (16 May 2013)
Having watched this film years ago, it never faded from my memory. Ialways thought this was the finest performance by Michelle Pfeifferthat I've seen. But, I am astounded by the number of negative reviewsthat this film has received. After seeing it once more today, I stillthink it is powerful, moving and couldn't care less if it is "basedloosely on King Lear".I now realize that this is the greatest performance by Jessica Langethat I've ever seen - and she has had accolades for much shallowerefforts.A Thousand Acres is complex, human, vibrant and immensely moving, butsurely doesn't present either of the primary female leads with anytouch of glamour or "sexiness". I don't think this is well received inthese times.Perhaps one reason for this film's underwhelming response lies in thefact that the writer (Jane Smiley(, screenplay (Laura Jones), anddirector (Jocelhyn Moorehouse) are all women. I know that, in myyounger days, I wouldn't have read a book written by a woman. I didn'tfocus on this fact until years later.If you haven't seen this movie or gave it a chance in the past, trywatching it anew. Maybe you are ready for it.
John Mankin (14 May 2013)
A Thousand Acres (1997:***) This sober drama lasted about a week intheaters and was dismissed as dreary soap opera by most critics. Thereareechoes of "King Lear" in the story of a wealthy farmer who decides todividehis estate among his three daughters. But I thought the reviewsoverestimated the extent towhich the story uses the Lear parallels. It's just a catalyst for astrongdrama of family conflicts and repressed memories coming to the fore thatsoon goes its own way. There are some script problems: the youngestdaughter's loyalty to her cruel father seems quite inexplicable, and as alawyer you would think she'd know better than to put a hopelessly senileperson on the witness stand. The fine cast does pretty well, especiallyJessica Lange and Michelle Pfeiffer, although as usual Jennifer JasonLeighis barely adequate as the youngest sister. Maybe watching this on astormySunday night helped put me in the mood, but I rather enjoyed thisone.
Manolis Dounias (14 May 2013)
I was really looking forward for this picture since i heard that MichellePfeiffer and Jessica Lange would star together. But when i eventually wentto see it i must say i was a bit disappointed. I don't say that the moviewas bad ,but the fact that i expected much more from it , make me regard itan average movie. The direction was very poor and the editing unacceptable.The adaption seemed to lack in many ways and Jennifer Jason Leigh wasunbearable. But seeing Pfeiffer ang Lange together on screen made me forgeteverything. These two great actresses proved for once more their talent.When you see them together on screen you forget all the disadvantages themovie has and there's nowhere else you want to be. They both deserved Oscarnominations and Lange probably the award too. Jason Robards though not asgood as in some of his previous roles was great too.
(13 May 2013)
This review is from: A Thousand Acres (DVD) Not a big box office success this is really a very good movie. Great performances from Michelle Pfeiffer, Colin Firth, Jessica Lange and Jason Robards.
ninja77 (12 May 2013)
SPOILERS... I had just finished this excellent book and was excitedabout seeing the film. In particular I was looking for resonant sceneslike Larry's kitchen cabinets left out in the rain, the buildingchemistry between Ginny and Jess, the mounting sense of loss felt byGinny when each of her family members betrays her, particularly thelast wounding blow from Rose. The film rushes from scene to scene,never giving any moment time to resonate with emotion. The result isthe feeling that you don't get to know or care about any of thecharacters. In the book I felt sorrow and shock when Pete died, inspite of his many flaws. In the film he is about as two-dimensional asyou can get. Jessica Lange has chops as an actress and could have madeGinny into the sympathetic character she is in the book. Unfortunately,the screenplay and direction didn't allow for it. The film feelsmechanical, almost like you can picture the director checking off eachscene in her to-do list. Make the breast cancer known, check. Showattraction between Ginny and Jess by having him touch her neck, check.Show Larry deciding to give up the farm, check. I agree with those whosaid it felt like a Lifetime special. I'm disappointed because theactors are top-notch, especially the freakishly gorgeous MichellePfeifer and the criminally under-rated Jennifer Jason Leigh. The landwas just as much a character in the book as any of the people, and Iwonder what the director could have been thinking by not showing thismore. In the end you feel like the sexual abuse and the death of asister are manipulative plot devices to jerk out the tears. I blame thedirection and the screenplay adaptation. Terrence Mallick could havedone justice to this great book. I wonder what Jane Smiley thought.
(30 April 2013)
BEWARE SPOILERS!One of the Message Boards threads at IMDb had two women talking about Colin Firth, how they watched the movie only because of him. Obviously these were two young women; but what struck me is how little this movie has been appreciated by audiences generally. The brilliant, and I mean brilliant, performances by Michelle Pfeiffer and Jessica Lange were hardly noticed, not only by audiences, but by the Academy and by most of the critics.I think I know why. First, the plot--or actually just the setup--is a kind of bastardization of Shakespeare's King Lear with the dying, crazy patriarch and the three scheming daughters who will inherit. Their names even begin with the same letters, Regan, Goneril, and Cordelia--Rose, Ginny, and Caroline. And I guess "Larry" (Jason Robards) works for "Lear." The apparent idea envisioned by Jane Smiley in her Pulitzer Prize winning novel was to tell a Lear-like story from the point of view of the daughters, and to tell it in a sort of late twentieth century realistic way not considered by the Bard. The problem is, in Smiley and Moorhouse's story, the two older daughters are very human with strengths and weaknesses while the father is a most despicable character without much in the way of redeeming qualities. His only strength is his ability to make a financial success of the farm; however, we can even discount that since his father and grandfather before him built the farm and he inherited it.The second problem--and this is one I cannot personally attest to, not having read Smiley's novel--is that the movie is only a limited and partial interpretation of that novel. Still, it is almost always the case that an excellent novel, especially a long and ambitious one with many psychological nuances, cannot be faithfully transferred to the screen. The vision and audio demands of film drown out the subtleties of a narration while the time constraints don't allow for the full development of character and motivation achieved by the novelist. Given five or six hours, perhaps Moorhouse could have made a movie more in keeping with Smiley's novel.A third problem is one that is perhaps Moorhouse's alone. She began her directing career with the very well done Aussie film Proof (1991) starring Russell Crowe. She follow it up with How to Make an American Quilt (1995) which celebrated women, especially women of a certain age. However it was a bit heavy-handed and clearly and determinedly a chick flick. In a sense A Thousand Acres takes off from there, showing us not only the point of view of women, but does so in a way that may seem politically motivated to some. Larry Cook is clearly a bad, bad daddy. He beat his daughters and he had carnal knowledge of them. He ran the household with an iron fist. Jess (Colin Firth's character) seduces the inexperienced Ginny and breaks her heart for nothing more than a bit of fun it would appear. And then he goes to Rose, who clearly is going to be the power behind the new ownership, and hooks up with her, while incidentally inducing her husband to end his life in a drunken accident. The rest of the men are one-dimensional characters without nuance, the way they often appear in romance novels. I think most audiences were put off by the heavy-handed incest, adultery and sexual betrayal that was woven into the story.Having said all this, I think the critics and the public are wrong. I think the direction was biased against men, but in this story it needed to be. I think Moorhouse did a fine job of making an emotional and engaging film about family dynamics that were none too pretty. And the acting by Pfeiffer and Lange was nothing short of sensational. They seemed to feed off of one another in a way that I found absolutely authentic and deeply moving. In particular Pfeiffer was riveting as she projected her bent-up anger and hatred. The way Moorhouse allowed her character to be revealed to us gradually is a tribute to her ability as a director as well as to Pfeiffer's outstanding performance. And the skill with which Moorhouse guided the change in Ginny's character as she went from a "ninny," as she called herself, to someone with self-awareness and some understandable bitterness, was also excellent. The fact that she left her husband was as much out of shame as anything else. He needed to go get her and forgive her and bring her back. And Robards in his intensity and madness was also very good.I predict that this film, which bombed in theaters, will be better appreciated in the years to come as people see it on DVD. My question is, whatever happened to Moorhouse? Her talent is obvious, but she has yet to director her fourth feature film. When she does I hope she remembers to go with what she believes but to be fair as well. I think, actually she was fair to the two lead character in this film, but didn't pay enough attention to the others. In addition to the unnuanced father, Jennifer Jason Leigh's Caroline was unfinished, leaving us to wonder about why she did some of the things she did. And the husbands needed to be something more than mannequins. They needed to be engaged and involved.
Mattias Thuresson (30 April 2013)
The cast is superb but the script is hopeless. It scatters its potentialinall directions: a bit of courtroom drama, breast cancer, a farmboy loveranda childhood of sexual abuse until your head is spinning. And it's not thefault of the cast, Jessica Lange in particular is superb.
(29 April 2013)
of either acceptance or rejection of the proposition that Shakespeare's comment upon the human condition can be contemporised.For myself, I think Jane Smiley admirably succeeds in portraying the deep familial hatred that sometimes occurs for no revealed (rhyme or rational) reason.
Spleen (29 April 2013)
The story is derived from "King Lear"; the setting is a farm in Iowa. Here's a test for this kind of thing: if you find yourself asking, "Why didso-and-so do such-and-such," and the answer is, "because that's whathappened in 'King Lear'," you know that the film has failed. Well, that ISwhat happens here. The father figure in this story isn't living his ownlife, he's mimicking a fictional one. But there's more wrong with the filmthan this.Jocelyn Moorhouse is ambitious - far more ambitious than I think sherealises. She's trying to take the King Lear story and completely changethe setting. This is a task in itself. The likeliest result is that thetransplanted story will die, and nobody will quite be able to work out why(although there are enough successful transplants, like "West Side Story",to make it worth trying). But she's ALSO attempting a revisionistretelling. In the version of "King Lear" she wishes to create, Reagan andGoneril command our sympathy, and Cordelia is a villain. This is a task initself, too.Succeeding at either task is hard; succeeding at both at once is impossible. In fact, succeeding at one while so much as attempting the other, isimpossible. If we are to look on the very same events from a differentmoral perspective then the events must BE the very same events - which meansthere can be no tampering with setting. If the story is to be transplanted,alive, into a different setting, its moral heart must keep beating the wholewhile - which means there can be no tampering with ethical perspective. Moorhouse was bound to fail in not just one but in both of her endeavours. And so she did....Naturally, it's possible to attempt both tasks, fail at both tasks, yetby some fluke hit upon a work of art that's good for independent reasons. Imention this because I haven't read Jane Smiley's novel, which, for all Iknow, IS good for independent reasons. But the film isn't. If there wasnothing else wrong with it, there would still be no getting around the factthat it's just so thoroughly, excruciatingly DULL. The very fields of cornare even more boring than they would be in real life - which needn't be thecase, since off the top of my head I can think of four films ("The Wizard ofOz", "North by Northwest", "The Straight Story", "Kikujiro") in which thecornfields aren't boring at all.
Phillip-7 (26 April 2013)
I didn't actually have high hopes for this film because I had read somecritics reviews when it first came out. I have not read the novel either. Ithought the film was very well done and was moved by it. I agree that manyof the supporting characters are underdeveloped but I could overlook thatbecause I knew what was motivating the main characters. The two leadactresses are brilliant, especially Jessica Lange, who deserved an Oscarnomination for this. I loved the way her character slowly changed throughthe movie and Lange can evoke so much emotion in the viewer with somethingas small as a hand gesture. Pfieffer is strong as well although the storymainly revolves around Ginny and I don't really see why Pfieffer gets firstbilling here. I strongly recommend the film, espeically ondvd.
(25 April 2013)
This review is from: A Thousand Acres (DVD) Great movie! It's awesome. I loove this movie. It is definitely a dramatic movie. It has everything. The actors did an awesome job. Definitely worth a buy. Great storyline to.
(23 April 2013)
A Thousand Acres was a film that I wasn't exactly looking forward to seeing. I don't like films which depict women as victims or in tortured roles. This film didn't. This film dealt with life - real life - the way it is for many women and not in the exact events and not getting to face the villains...but it will touch so many who can put off their own issues and just watch from the perspective of two little girls turned women. The film gives us a strong character in Pfeiffer, one who doesn't just cry and take the ugliness. She gets angry, and the "angrier she gets, the better she feels"...which is a very honest thing. It taps into frustrations, it taps into anyone who has ever felt like she was intimidated by a man or a father due to power. It is brilliant. And for all the morons who like to call such a thing "cliche" or "contrived"...ask all the 1 out of 4 girls molested every year how cliche each of their stories is. This film actually reminds the American community, as numb as they've gotten to females as human beings and not sex objects, just how disgusting and serious it is to be violating women and young people as a whole.
anonymous (22 April 2013)
I was very moved by the gentle power of this movie and by the mood itcreated. I think it should have gotten a great deal more credit than itdid. I agree that Michelle Pfeiffer should have been nominated, but I thinkall the performances were outstanding, and that Michelle Pfeiffer andJessica Lange portrayed the deep affinity and conflicts of sisters withgreat emotional depth and sensitivity. Although I didn't read the book, Ifound the modern concept of King Lear very cool. I certainly will neverlook at the play quite the same way again!
(20 April 2013)
This review is from: A Thousand Acres (DVD) Everything about this film is wonderful, and I can't think of any reason to give it less than 5 stars. The cast is excellent and the story is gripping. It will move you and bring you to tears as it did with me. If you like this genre of film and appreciate some of the best actors, you will not be disappointed. This is as good as it gets.
(19 April 2013)
I have seen this movie a couple of times and I have to say it is a good movie. There is a lot of drama and real life stuff. It really is a good movie. I would recommend this movie to any one. It's worth watching at least once.
Red7Eric (19 April 2013)
When I found out that Jessica Lange, Michelle Pfeiffer, Jennifer JasonLeigh, and Jason Robards were teaming for a film based on a Pulitzer-Prizewinning novel, I went out and read the book immediately. "A Thousand Acres"was one of the best reading experiences of my life, and while the filmcouldn't capture the book in its entirety (no film could, unless it were sixhours long), I really enjoyed it. Michelle Pfeiffer should have receivedanother Oscar nomination for her fearless portrayal of Rose Cook Lewis, thecharacter modeled after Shakespeare's evil Regan from "King Lear." Whileall of the performances are solid, they seem somehow timid next to Pfeiffer,who once again proves that she is most definitely not just another prettyface.
(19 April 2013)
I loved this book and this movie. Michelle Phiffer and Jessica Lange are a dream cast toghether and I can only hope they continue to make movies together. I cried throughout the movie and felt as if I was with them throughout their trials. Everyone needs to see this!
epitone (16 April 2013)
'A Thousand Acres' is one of the best books I've ever read and one of theworst movies I've ever seen, so obviously something was lost in theadaptation. On-set reports claimed that the director was trying to changethe story radically while stars Lange and Pfeiffer attempted to keep itcloser to the book. The director seems to have won out.It's really a shame, because you couldn't ask for a better cast to bring'Acres' to life. Jason Robards is dead-on as Larry, the psychologicallydamaged patriarch, and Lange, Pfeiffer, and Leigh have great chemistry asthe three sisters. But good actors need good lines, and the screenplaydoesn't give them any. The approach taken by the writer and directortowardadapting Jane Smiley's brilliant, Pulitzer-prize winning novel seems tohavebeen to simply stick all the dramatic, important scenes together and leaveout the nuances and character development that made the story so special.In fairness, 'Acres' couldn't have been easy to adapt; it has more thanenough scope to make a movie trilogy or an entire series of television.Perhaps it was a mistake, then, to try to keep the beginning, middle andendessentially the same as the book. This approach shows us all the effectsand none of the causes. Especially confusing is the scant 105 minuterunning time, which is only slightly longer than your average Adam Sandlermovie. If the director and studio had been willing to make this a 3-hourfilm, it might have had a chance. As it stands, the movie plays like ahighlight reel of the book, and that's not enough to involve the vieweremotionally.'A Thousand Acres' is a fantastic story, though the movie would try hardtoconvince you otherwise. Pick up the book and see for yourself.
(16 April 2013)
This film definitely has merit as well as an all-star cast. It may well be an updated version of King Lear, but I found the topic less than entertaining...and I was not thrilled with the ending. As for Colin Firth's performance as an American drifter... he successfully portrays a Mr. Wickham from his P&P days. He is charming, available, and easy to like ~ except he is definitely not going to be around for the duration. And what sort of cad sleeps with sisters of the same family...simultaneously?
Review total: 20, showing from 1 to 20