Original Sin (Blu-ray)
A wealthy Cuban business man with no time for love, seeks to wed a stranger from American who he’s been corresponding with through letters. They meet, marry and all seems well until he discovers a deception that leads to betrayal and murder.
It’s hilarious that I thought for sure I’d seen this film, but as I watched it last night I immediately realized that I hadn’t. When I first saw Thomas Jane’s name come up in the opening credits I figured I could have overlooked him back then but when I realized this was new territory I got excited because I’m a big fan of Jane’s and feel he’s somewhat of an overlooked talent these days (Yes, he’s got HUNG, but seriously, how excited can I get about a show with him as a gigolo). This flick also made me realize just how much I miss Antonio Banderas. I immediately started sifting through my mental rolodex of favourite Banderas roles over the years which made me miss the guy even more. I like how he’s voicing Puss from PUSS AND BOOTS and all, but Puss has nothing on DESPERADO. This was a great film and thankfully didn’t show it’s age at all (despite of course, how young it’s cast appears).
I knew this would be a lucrative venture once I realized it was based upon a novel. Sure, that doesn’t always mean it’s a homerun but this time it actually was. I’m not a fan of the plot, more importantly how Jolie’s character is quite the harlot, but hey, whatever works I guess. Banderas’s character is just so genuine and lovable that you’re crushed whenever he’s crushed (and he’s crushed a lot). Clearly, one of the morals of this story is never sign up for a mail away bride. Yes, this should be obvious by now, but nothing nails this fact home like watching what happens to this poor guy throughout the film.
One thing that definitely stands out here (like I mentioned in my POSSE review) is the steamy sex scenes between Banderas and Jolie. WOW, I know this is a movie and all, but man oh man would I have loved to be Antonio Banderas as he went through however many takes it took to get these scenes perfect. I’d like to say we don’t see stuff like this anymore but that would be untrue. We do see it quite a bit in TV series’ like TRUE BLOOD, SPARTACUS and so many other HBO or STARZ based shows. Movies have actually toned things down over the past decade or two. I’m not saying it’s a bad thing and I don’t want to sound bias because I’m a guy, but it’s something that’s very noticeable when revisiting these old flicks.
ORIGINAL SIN is a cool sort of love story, that (like Angie says in her opening monologue) isn’t a love story. The love Banderas’ character has for his charlatan wife is moving, inspiring and hauntingly beautiful. I’m not so sure real life would favour the outcome of this tale but it’s fun to believe it could end like it does. The two of them working people over in poker was a delightful addition to things, especially when it comes to the conclusion of the film. I like where this film goes and how despite the film’s dark undertone we do get to see the power of love in all its glory. Again, there’s not a lot of meat on this Blu-ray when it comes to special features and I’m not so sure this film has much potential when it comes to multiple viewing, but this is a decent movie and worth a look especially if you haven’t seen it.
Video: 2.35:1 Widescreen in 1080p HD with AVC codec. From the landscapes to the architecture, this film sizzles visually in more ways than one.
Audio: 5.1 DTS-HD in English, French and Spanish with the same subtitle options. I wasn’t much for the film’s score but what was there sounded fine to me.
Commentary (1:18:00): Director Michael Cristofer gives a one man commentary here and lost most solo acts it runs a bit stale and uninteresting. Having at least one of the main actors, or in this case maybe the author of the novel, is always a good idea. When will they learn?
Music Video (4:45): Gloria Estefan performs her music video “You Can’t Walk Away From Love” based upon the film. It’s a catchy tune, but a terrible video.
Previews: There’s a theatrical trailer for the film.