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Maurice
     

Maurice

4.5 12
Director: James Ivory

Cast: James Wilby, Hugh Grant, Rupert Graves

 

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James Ivory and Ismail Merchant's Maurice, a tale of homosexual love set in a time and place when such a relationship was forbidden by law, gets a stately DVD release thanks to Home Vision. The film is presented in a widescreen transfer that preserves the original theatrical aspect ratio of 1.78:1. The English soundtrack is rendered in Dolby Digital Stereo.

Overview

James Ivory and Ismail Merchant's Maurice, a tale of homosexual love set in a time and place when such a relationship was forbidden by law, gets a stately DVD release thanks to Home Vision. The film is presented in a widescreen transfer that preserves the original theatrical aspect ratio of 1.78:1. The English soundtrack is rendered in Dolby Digital Stereo. English subtitles are accessible. The extensive supplemental materials include new interviews with the director, the producer, the screenwriter, and the cast, including Hugh Grant; deleted scenes; and an alternate opening with a commentary by Ivory. The original theatrical trailer rounds out this fine disc.

Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Brian J. Dillard
Written in 1914, but published only after its author's death because he didn't wish to cause a scandal, Maurice is E.M. Forster's most personal novel, though it's also his least meaty. Unlike most of Merchant-Ivory's other Forster adaptations, then, Maurice boils its source material down to an essence without losing any of the flavor. As the callow title character, James Wilby does a good job fumbling toward self-knowledge in a social landscape devoid of self-help manuals or vaguely respectable role models. His character's arc may have become a tad overfamiliar in the years since the book was written, let alone since the movie came out, but in the context of pre-World War I England, it resonates. Hugh Grant, meanwhile, gets to have all the fun as Clive Durham, the lover who lapses from intellectual devotion into self-delusion as adulthood plies its many pressures. James Ivory's script insists on depicting Clive as a clear-cut closet case rather than exploring the ambiguous conception of homosexuality in an era before modern ideas about sexual orientation had taken shape. It's to Grant's credit, then, that he makes Clive's inner torment so wrenching. Rupert Graves' gay groundskeeper doesn't show up till the third act, but his unvarnished charm adds some much-needed grit and momentum to a film that sometimes seems to depict coming out of the closet as an endless attack of the vapors. Ultimately, Forster's conflation of working-class vitality with personal freedom is a little too pat for modern audiences. But, seen in its historical context as both a novel and a film, Maurice is as interesting as it is entertaining.

Product Details

Release Date:
02/24/2004
UPC:
0037429179024
Original Release:
1987
Rating:
R
Source:
Merchant Ivory
Region Code:
1
Presentation:
[Wide Screen]
Sound:
[Dolby Digital Stereo]
Time:
2:20:00

Special Features

Luminous new high-definition digital transfer, enhanced for widescreen televisions; "Conversation With the Filmmakers," part of a new series of interviews with Ismail Merchant, James Ivory, and Richard Robbins; "The Story of Maurice," featuring new interviews with screenwriter Kit Hesketh-Harvey and actors James Wilby, Hugh Grant, and Rupert Graves; Over 30 minutes of deleted and alternate scenes, including a reconstructed opening sequence, with commentary by James Ivory; Original theatrical trailer; English subtitles for the deaf and hearing impaired

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
James Wilby Maurice Hall
Hugh Grant Clive Durham
Rupert Graves Alec Scudder
Denholm Elliott Dr. Barry
Simon Callow Mr. Ducie
Billie Whitelaw Mrs. Hall
Ben Kingsley Lasker-Jones
Judy Parfitt Mrs. Durham
Phoebe Nicholls Anne Durham
Mark Tandy Risley
Helena Michell Ada Hall
Kitty Aldridge Kitty Hall
Patrick Godfrey Simcox
Michael Jenn Archie
Barry Foster Dean Cornwalis
Peter Eyre Mr. Borenius
Catherine Rabett Pippa Durham
Orlando Wells Young Maurice
Helena Bonham Carter Bonham,Young Lady at Cricket Match
Andrew St. Clair Undergraduate
Harriet Thorpe Barmaid
Julian Wadham Hull
Richard Warner Judge
Alan Whybrow Mr. Scudder

Technical Credits
James Ivory Director,Screenwriter
Brian Ackland-Snow Production Designer
Jenny Beavan Costumes/Costume Designer
Paul Bradley Associate Producer
John Bright Costumes/Costume Designer
Celestia Fox Casting
Kit Hesketh-Harvey Screenwriter
Mary Hillman Makeup
Richard Robbins Score Composer
Mike Shoring Sound/Sound Designer
Katherine Wenning Editor
Michael Zimbrich Asst. Director

Scene Index

Side #1 -- Disc 1
1. Opening Credits/"The Sacred Mystery of Sex" [6:19]
2. Michaelmas Term, 1909, Cambridge [3:13]
3. Meeting Clive Durham [4:09]
4. "The Unspeakable Vice of the Greeks" [5:28]
5. "Your Father Always Went to Church" [1:33]
6. First Embrace [6:38]
7. "Can't You Kiss Me?" [4:32]
8. Maurice Returns Home [2:01]
9. Pendersleigh Park, 1910 [5:33]
10. The City, 1911 [2:56]
11. Viscount Risley Arrested [6:29]
12. Clive Breaks Down [6:27]
13. Durham Visits Greece [2:25]
14. "Can the Leopard Change its Spots?" [7:02]
15. Maurice and Ada [2:00]
16. "Clive Durham Is to Be Married" [5:54]
17. A Visit With Dr. Barry [4:34]
18. Pendersleigh, Autumn, 1913 [12:34]
19. Maurice Hypnotized [4:00]
20. Alec Scudder [10:25]
21. Cricket Match [6:07]
22. A Second Visit With the Dr. Lasker-Jones [3:07]
23. Scudder Visits London [11:11]
24. Southampton Sendoff [7:56]
25. The Boathouse [4:30]
26. End Credits [2:38]

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Maurice 4.6 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 12 reviews.
Ruadhan_McElroy More than 1 year ago
Well adapted from the EM Forster novel to screen, Maurice is a well-done work about a man realises his homosexuality in college in 1910. At first confused, then enthralled within the arms of his beloved, he is soon afterward expelled from school. Following the disgrace of a college acquaintance, his lover retreats to a "normal" married life. After a passage of time, Maurice, now heartbroken, seeks the aid of doctors to "fix" him, only to realise he doesn't want to be.

I read the book first and fully engrossed in it during a trip to Chicago. I was intrigued, but wary, to discover a film version on the shelf of my local video rental. Though this is a UK production and not an "Hollywood" one, I still don't typically trust film adaptations of beloved novels, usually some part or another of the book's integrity winds up being compromised in the screenplay adaptation, even if only small ones made for time constraints; all too often, the results of clipping a scene here or there leaves some points muddled or or simply lacklustre. This one, though, is one of those splendid gems that truly does do the original text justice, even with small scenes omitted. The settings and costuming were absolutely lovely and the actors carried the look and dignity of their characters very well.

All in all, an instant classic I highly recommend to any-one who has loved the book.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is a gorgeous adaptation of a wonderful book. The cinematography is breathtaking, the score is beautiful, the acting of this fine cast is superb, and the direction could not be better. Highly recommended to fans of queer cinema and fans of period pieces.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Karen Longo More than 1 year ago
I love all Merchant-Ivory adaptations, but somehow missed this one. Having watched it several times in a row this past week, it's now one of my all time favorite movies. James Wilby is amazing and sad as Maurice, a middle-class young man who falls in love with his friend Clive at Cambridge (a baby faced Hugh Grant). Clive is upper class landed gentry, and although he makes the first move, he soon comes to realize that their affair could ruin him, and land them both in jail (this being 1910 England and all). Maurice is devastated, but they remain platonic friends, on Clive's terms. Then Maurice's world is turned upside down when he begins a relationship with the gamekeeper of Clive's estate, Alec Scudder (a gorgeous and radiant Rupert Graves). Despite their class differences and the fact that they'd have to hide and live a secret life, they choose to be together. Their final scene at the boathouse is one of the most romantic in any movie. Although there is (quite a bit of) full frontal male nudity, the love scenes are very tastefully done and sensual.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Brilliantly realized adaptation that manages the 'trip to Greece' question in a fashion far more believably than does the novel ... 'only connect' w/ this title and you'll be happy.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I had no idea about the story when I saw it the first time, but I fell in love with the characters, especially Grant's character, so afraid of being 'outed' in a time when it was illegal that he had to lead another life altogether. Woe to Maurice! Vacationing in fine english country homes and bopping from country to country ... ah, what a way to live.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I enjoyed this movie as it shows the struggle of homosexuality and straight life given the pierod of time this movie takes place. For those who love great endings, this is a movie for you.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Guest More than 1 year ago
One of the greatest movie I ever seen. Huge Grant has the role fitted him most and Rupert Graves is the shinning star above all. A must see!
Guest More than 1 year ago
Though there are some who can't appreciate this film because of its longitude, it has a clear value, just looking at its historical view. The film cannot compete with the original book, written in 1913/1914 by E.M. Forster. Let others fall asleep, i surely can enjoy this one
Guest More than 1 year ago
Really, I mean I literally couldn't keep my eyes open. Beautiful cinematography, romantic settings, a script that moves like a salted snail. Sensitive gay-themed movies may be few & far between, but I'm not so desperate for one that I'm willing to overlook the serious entertainment shortcomings of this snore-a-thon...zzzzzzzz.