Quills

( 10 )

Overview

Presented in its cinematic 1.85:1 aspect ratio and Dolby Digital 5.1, Philip Kaufman's Quills is a sumptuous treat on DVD. The only thing missing is compelling supplemental material, though it's not that the DVD doesn't try in that area. The first thing one notices, after the stylish menus, is that the movie is true eye candy in this digital presentation. Cinematographer Rogier Stoffers' photography captures the colors and textures of Jacqueline West's exquisite costumes and the movie's bold sets with flair, and ...
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Overview

Presented in its cinematic 1.85:1 aspect ratio and Dolby Digital 5.1, Philip Kaufman's Quills is a sumptuous treat on DVD. The only thing missing is compelling supplemental material, though it's not that the DVD doesn't try in that area. The first thing one notices, after the stylish menus, is that the movie is true eye candy in this digital presentation. Cinematographer Rogier Stoffers' photography captures the colors and textures of Jacqueline West's exquisite costumes and the movie's bold sets with flair, and the DVD does great justice to all of the visuals. Stephen Warbeck's musical score flitters deftly over and around the dialogue, as the sound consistently impresses. The problem with the supplemental material is that it concentrates too much on the costumes and production rather than the history behind the characters. "Marquis on the Marquee," "Creating Charenton," and "Dressing the Part" all use interviews and film clips to briefly highlight the script, the production design, and the costumes, respectively. Screenwriter Doug Wright's commentary track is insightful, but ultimately rather lifeless, and the "Music Promo Spot" is basically just an advertisement. The "Still Gallery of Production Artifacts," one of the more interesting supplements, displays props from the movie as still frames. "Fact & Film" alternates factoids about the movie's characters and stars, comparing historical facts with the fantasy of the movie; something more in-depth in this department would have been most welcome. Standard trailers and scene selections round out this lackluster package.
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Special Features

3 revealing featurettes; Commentary by screenwriter Doug Wright; Still gallery; Theatrical trailer; TV spot
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Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - Ed Hulse
Academy Award winner Geoffrey Rush deserves another gold statuette for his bravura turn as the Marquis de Sade in Quills, a provocative period drama that unfolds in an environment of madness and depravity. Rush portrays the Marquis as a tormented genius, confined in a madhouse and driven obsessively to commit his lewdest fantasies to paper. Kate Winslet, in her best role since Titanic, plays a laundress who smuggles his manuscripts to eagerly waiting printers, and Joaquin Phoenix is quietly persuasive as the progressive priest who tries to accommodate the Marquis and runs afoul of a tyrannical doctor Michael Caine. Screenwriter Doug Wright, adapting his own play, twists historical events and characters for dramatic purposes, turning the 18th-century asylum into a charnel house of chilling perversion and casting the Marquis in a vaguely sympathetic light. Director Philip Kaufman The Unbearable Lightness of Being is even less ambiguous: He sees de Sade as a martyr in the crusade for freedom of expression, and his keepers as deluded or sinister agents of a repressive society. While certainly titillating in its depictions of de Sade's fevered dreams, Quills doesn’t wallow in muck for sensationalistic purposes; it has a more serious message -- one that’s conveyed with consummate skill from both sides of the camera. The DVD edition includes three separate featurettes covering the film’s production and subject, along with a full-length commentary by Wright and a gallery of stills.
All Movie Guide - Michael Hastings
Philip Kaufman's taut, economical dramatization of the latter years of the Marquis de Sade may sacrifice historical accuracy in the name of high entertainment, but makes for essential viewing nonetheless, thanks in large part to the bold, uncompromising work of lead Geoffrey Rush. All of Rush's film work to date seems to inform his rendering of de Sade: the mania, desperation, and dogged conviction he displayed (with varying degrees of success) in films such as Shine (1996), Children of the Revolution (1996), and Elizabeth (1998) are all in perfect balance here. In a return to form after 1993's dismal Rising Sun, Kaufman seems determined to transcend the stage origins of Doug Wright's screenplay, employing cunning camerawork, convincingly decrepit locales, and crisp editing in order to keep the film's forward momentum from sagging. Still, packed as it is with clever turns of phrase and convenient plot developments, Quills could never be mistaken for a loose, realistic take on the vilified author's life (those in search of a more factual take on the Marquis should look to the 1966 film version of Peter Weiss's play Marat/Sade). Rather, Quills provides a juicy, almost old-fashioned moviegoing experience -- albeit with all the lurid sex, masochism, and graphic feces afforded by this century's censors.
New York Times - Elvis Mitchell
The elegance of Mr. Kaufman's direction and his handling of the cast make for the kind of euphoric stylishness that has been missing from moviegoing for some time.

The elegance of Mr. Kaufman's direction and his handling of the cast make for the kind of euphoric stylishness that has been missing from moviegoing for some time.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 4/5/2011
  • UPC: 024543016632
  • Original Release: 2000
  • Rating:

  • Source: 20th Century Fox
  • Region Code: 1
  • Time: 2:04:00
  • Format: DVD

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Geoffrey Rush Marquis de Sade
Kate Winslet Madeleine
Joaquin Phoenix Coulmier
Michael Caine Royer-Collard
Billie Whitelaw Madame LeClerc
Patrick Malahide Delbene
Pauline McLynn Mademoiselle Clairwill
Stephen Moyer Prouix
Technical Credits
Philip Kaufman Director
Peter Boyle Editor
Julia Chasman Producer
Martin Childs Production Designer
Mark Huffam Co-producer
Peter Kaufman Producer
Steve Lawrence Art Director
Des McAnuff Executive Producer
Jill Quertier Set Decoration/Design
Deborah Saban Asst. Director
Sandra Schulberg Executive Producer
Rogier Stoffers Cinematographer
Stephen Warbeck Score Composer
Nick Wechsler Producer
Jacqueline West Costumes/Costume Designer
Rudolf Wiesmeier Executive Producer
Doug Wright Screenwriter
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Scene Index

Disc #1 -- Quills
1. A Naughty Story
2. Charenton Asylum (Main Titles)
3. Smuggled Stories
4. Visiting the Marquis
5. The Asylum Appraiser
6. The Published Word
7. The Doctor's Bride
8. A Farce
9. The Punishment
10. Creative Writing
11. Written In Blood
12. Woman's Desire
13. The Doctor's Revenge
14. Writing By Proxy
15. Bedlam
16. A Victim
17. Silenced
18. A New Administration
19. A Legacy
20. End Titles
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Menu

Disc #1 -- Quills
   Play
   Scene Selection
   Language Selection
      Spoken Languages
         English 5.1 Surround
         English Dolby Surround
         French Dolby Surround
      Captions & Subtitles
         English
         Spanish
         Subtitles: None
   Special Features
      Marquis on the Marquee
      Creating Charenton
      Dressing the Part
      Theatrical Trailers and TV Spot
         Theatrical Trailer
         Spanish Trailer
         "Pay the Price Review" TV Spot
      Commentary by Screenwriter Doug Wright: On
      Commentary by Screenwriter Doug Wright: Off
      Music Promo Spot
      Still Gallery of Production Artifacts
      Fact & Film
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 10 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(7)

4 Star

(2)

3 Star

(1)

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Sort by: Showing all of 10 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Excellent film

    This movie is absolutely astonishing, and one of my very favorites. Throughout, you are completely at the mercy of how the director and actors wish you to feel. With only one truly hateable character (who is also excellently portrayed by Micheal Caine), all the rest are full of life and interesting. The ending is also dynamic, and in my opinion, one of the best parts of the film. With a cast the likes of Rush, Phoenix, Winslet, and Caine how could you possibly fail?

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Amazingly Perverse and intriguing.

    I've yet to buy Quills, yet I can't seem to keep myself from renting it practically everytime I visit the video store. This movie portrays the Marquis de Sade as a tortured writer who will stop at nothing to express him lurid and perverse fantasies. Amazing film, and Geoffrey Rush is fantastic.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    The best movie in years!

    I loved the movie for all it was worth. I thought that the characters inthe movie played a fabulous role and the screneplay was the best i have seen in a while.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    A literary genius

    Read between the lines of this story. See the human natures' spirit that refuses to be stilled. Ride the hidden desires of your own soul with the peronalities that are portrayed...perhaps you are one of the characters yourself?

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Wonderfully original!

    I loved this movie! It is a wonderfully done film that has you fall in love with the characters. I do warn those who are squemish not to get this movie. You need to be open minded and ready for the story to take you to weird and unusual places.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Thoroughly enjoyed

    I thoroughly enjoyed this film; it's a pleasure to see something other than Hollywood's latest testosterone driven shoot 'em up movie or, conversely, some run of the mill chick flick. If you're scared that this film is all about being perverted, get over it, it's not about that - the film portrays the Marquis De Sade as a tormented genius who is compelled to write his stories, even in his own blood if ink is not available. He is not portrayed as a hero. In fact, he makes a terrific anti-hero. Anyway, buy the film and stop being so squeamish about the subject matter!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 10, 2010

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 27, 2008

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 20, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted December 8, 2008

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