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Love in the Time of Cholera

Film in the Time of Oprah
By ROB NELSON  |  November 14, 2007
1.0 1.0 Stars

VIDEO: Watch the trailer for Love in the Time of Cholera.

Film in the Time of Oprah is more like it. As duly (and dully) Anglicized by director Mike Newell (Four Weddings and a Funeral), this tone-deaf adaptation of Gabriel García Márquez’s newly revived Book Club hit reduces magical realism to the white-chocolate cake lathered on the face of Giovanna Mezzogiorno, the young Italian actress forced to play the Colombian heroine at age 72 in the movie’s ill-boding prologue. Fifty years is a long time to carry a torch, as Florentino (Javier Bardem) does for the married Fermina (Mezzogiorno). But 138 minutes feels like an eternity as Newell’s desire for slapstick has him cutting from his lovesick pussyhound’s compensatory sexual conquests to feline reaction shots and eventually outfitting the chameleonic Bardem to resemble Groucho Marx. Granted, this is hardly the first Hollywood film to feature Latinos practicing ESL in their own land, but with lines like “Her smell is in my noh-streels,” it’s among the dumbest. 138 minutes | Boston Common + Fenway + Kendall Square + Circle/Chestnut Hill + Suburbs
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