A man ahead of his time, Cyrano de Bergerac (Peter Dinklage) dazzles whether with ferocious wordplay at a verbal joust or with brilliant swordplay in a duel. But, convinced that his appearance renders him unworthy of the love of a devoted friend, the luminous Roxanne (Haley Bennett), Cyrano has yet to declare his feelings for her—and Roxanne has fallen in love, at first sight, with Christian.
I am not a lover of musicals. But I enjoyed CYRANO more than other musicals I’ve seen of late. It’s a beautiful retelling of the Cyrano de Bergerac classic.
Peter Dinklage and Haley Bennett do a convincing job as the two leads, as do the rest of the cast — and Dinklage can sing — well … he’s ok, but not great. But it doesn’t matter! In fact, Dinklage is the heart and soul of this movie, and without him, CYRANO would be a lesser movie.
Unlike some musicals, the songs are kept to moments of reflection except for a few larger set pieces involving dancing, and the story and acting are given priority over the need to have a song inserted everywhere. The balance is exactly right.
The dialogue is witty, and the story feels perfectly paced with some beautiful, emotionally evocative moments, some of which are deeply moving (such as the scene where soldiers on the front line of battle send letters back home before they engage in what may be their last day alive.)
The characters are well drawn, and Dinklage and Bennett have a great chemistry when on screen together. There’s some excellent humour balanced with deep emotions and the soundtrack’s modern sound feels right as it intersects with the 17th century story.It’s an unexpectedly delightful piece of romantic entertainment. Recommended!
(In cinemas in Australia – check your movie guide for your local show times.)
OTHER MOVIES I’VE SEEN:
- QUO VADIS, AIDA (2020) – Bosnia, July 1995. Aida is a translator for the UN in the small town of Srebrenica. When the Serbian army takes over the town, her family is among the thousands of citizens looking for shelter in the UN camp. As an insider to the negotiations Aida has access to crucial information that she needs to interpret. What is at the horizon for her family and people – rescue or death? Which move should she take? ****
- HIVE (2021) – Fahrije’s husband has been missing since the war in Kosovo. She sets up her own small business to provide for her kids, but as she fights against a patriarchal society that does not support her, she faces a crucial decision. ****