Winter’s Tale attempts something very clever: It sidesteps criticism by very overtly presenting itself as a fairy tale. In other words, it plays by a different set of rules than most films. If you are looking for escapist fantasy, then this is most definitely for you. If, on the other hand, you prefer your films to have somewhat more to them than bright lights and giant plot holes, then perhaps you’d be better off buying a ticket for the movie next-door.
Based on a novel by Mark Helprin rather than the play by William Shakespeare, the film starts out as a supernatural romance and turns into a supernatural drama as it abruptly lunges forward in time around the halfway mark from 1916 to 2014.
It all starts in 1895, when two Russian immigrants arrive in New York City with their baby, but when a medical checkup reveals they have tuberculosis and have to take the ship back, they put their small child, Peter, in a model ship, lower him down into the Hudson River and set him free to make a life for himself, somehow, on his own. If this were a serious film, it would be difficult for the viewer to keep herself from bursting out laughing at this point, but it’s pretty clear things shouldn’t be taken too seriously, because one or two scenes later, the flying horse makes his first appearance.
To read the full review, visit The Prague Post.
(Still of Russell Crowe and Colin Farrell in Winter’s Tale. Photo by David C. Lee – © 2013 Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc.)