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Review of Steamy, Southern Gothic film “The Beguiled” in Theaters June 30th #TheBeguiled

The Beguiled

“The Beguiled” is a southern Gothic masterpiece. No matter the period of time in history the human heart is a fragile piece of us that can lead us passionately to pursue our every desire and can even lead us down a volatile path if left to feel rejected or unloved. Can you imagine all the sexual tension in a house full of women who’d never really been able to indulge in the affection of a man, and the turmoil that ensues as they fuss over him for attention? Sofia Coppola’s adaptation of the “The Beguiled”  gives us a rare look at the lives of women of various ages during the civil war and their complex relationships once a “hot” looking Union soldier recovers within their seminary after being found injured in the forests of the South.

The Beguiled

The Perfect Setting for “The Beguiled”

There was something alluring and mysterious about the Madewood Plantation House located in Louisiana where they filmed. It was this ginormous-polished space that although housed 8 women seemed so barren and empty until the intensity of having Corporal John  McBurney to tend to filled each room with new life & vivacious energy. As the cameras pan across the now, iconic “pop” property {It’s the mansion featured in R&B singer Beyonce’s song Sorry from her  Lemonade album} throughout the movie the views of the oak trees, Spanish moss and vines surrounding give an eerie feeling of isolation. And if you listen closely you’ll realize there isn’t much of a musical score being played but I definitely noticed the frequent, echoing sound of cicadas lurking in the trees.

The Beguiled

A Dangerous Undercurrent in “The Beguiled”

Something that stood out was how we get to see the interactions between Colin Farell’s character McBurney  with Miss Martha {Nicole Kidman}, Edwina {Kirsten Dunst}, Alicia {Elle Fanning} and the younger girls. You can tell they all want to believe they can trust him, but really should they? Each relationship so different, but yet collectively his charming presence has the entire house turned upside down and proper etiquette flies out the window with just a glimpse of a tightly pulled corset and smooth bare shoulders to feel a sense of adoration. Even the youngest girls vie for his attention by throwing on pairs of sweet pearl earrings. Elle, hailing from Georgia and now 18 years old said she could easily relate to the character’s need to be ladylike yet I loved how sassy and flirtatious her character Alicia actually was.

The Beguiled

During the interview I sat in on in Los Angeles, Kirsten discussed her roles as Edwina:

Kirsten: I just felt like the whole house was so suffocating, you know. So by the time we bring this enemy in,  there’s so much opposition inside of her because, you know, she’s trying to be a good Christian and a good example for the girls, and yet there’s this enemy, and then on top of it, she has so much repression, and then she’s under Miss Martha’s thumb. So Edwina’s just ready to explode!

Kirsten Dunst is far from repressed and fragile so it was interesting to see her in this role as the vulnerable school teacher but I did like the steamy scene between her and Colin Farell which showed her as a woman going after what she wants….and yes that may include getting her knickers passionately ripped off.

Ultimately if nothing else viewing this movie is a lesson that there are always consequences for our actions and that as women we should always respect the sisterhood!

The Beguiled

The Beguiled will be in theaters nationwide beginning this Friday, June 30th.

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Danielle
Danielle Wilson is an Event Coordinator & Freelance writer who lives in Queens, NY with her hubby and two lil' monsters. You can find her living in the moment while beating Crohns disease. Follow their family adventures in the city at Dellah's Jubilation and over on Instagram @DellahsJubilation and Twitter @Djubilation