[Screen It]

 

"THE ENGLISH PATIENT"
(1996) (Ralph Fiennes, Juliette Binoche) (R)

Alcohol/
Drugs
Blood/Gore Disrespectful/
Bad Attitude
Frightening/
Tense Scenes
Guns/
Weapons
Moderate Heavy Mild Moderate Moderate
Imitative
Behavior
Jump
Scenes
Music
(Scary/Tense)
Music
(Inappropriate)
Profanity
Mild None Mild None Heavy
Sex/
Nudity
Smoking Tense Family
Scenes
Topics To
Talk About
Violence
Heavy Mild None Mild Heavy


QUICK TAKE:
Drama: The survivor of an early WWII plane crash slowly remembers the events that led up to that event.
PLOT:
Count Laszlo Almasy (RALPH FIENNES) is the survivor of a plane crash during the early years of WWII. Severely burned, he isn't expected to live for very long, and to make matters worse, he can't remember anything about his past. A kind and caring nurse, Hana (JULIETTE BINOCHE) decides to stay with him in a bombed out monastery during his last days. Another soldier, Caravaggio (WILLEM DAFOE), shows up and claims that he might know Almasy and if that's the case, he's the one responsible for Carvaggio's missing thumbs. Soon bits of Almasy's memory come back and it's learned that he was a cartographer who was mapping Northern Africa for the Allies along with fellow "mappers" Madox (JULIAN WADHAM), and Geoffrey (COLIN FIRTH) and Katharine Clifton (KRISTIN SCOTT THOMAS). A passionate affair between Almasy and Katharine then developed that eventually led to the fateful accident. As Hana helps Almasy recall these events, she begins her own romance with demolitions expert, Kip (NAVEEN ANDREWS) who saved her from a booby trapped piano. As more and more details are discovered, the complicated story of Almasy, Katharine and Caravaggio comes into focus.
WILL KIDS WANT TO SEE IT?
Probably not. A tragic, WWII love story won't draw them to this one.
WHY THE MPAA RATED IT: R
For sexuality, some violence and language.
CAST AS ROLE MODELS:
  • RALPH FIENNES plays the burn victim and in flashback, the cartographer who begins an affair with a married woman.
  • JULIETTE BINOCHE plays a kind and caring nurse who begins a romance with Kip.
  • KRISTIN SCOTT THOMAS plays an adventurous woman who, although married, has an affair with Almasy.
  • WILLEM DAFOE plays a thief who has come to kill Almasy, but doesn't in the end.
  • CAST, CREW, & TECHNICAL INFO

    HOW OTHERS RATED THIS MOVIE


    OUR TAKE: 7 out of 10
    An epic film of near Shakespearean tragic proportions, this nearly three-hour film is sure to please the adult audience tired of movies aimed at the teenage population. While overly melodramatic at times, the film's dual story and time lines make the plot that much more interesting and enjoyable. The performances are outstanding across the board as are the director and the writing. Don't be surprised to see some Oscar nominations from this film especially in the acting and cinematography departments. Our only real objection is the length of the film. Some trimming here and there would have tightened the story a bit, but that's just us nitpicking. If not for the length, we would have given this film a slightly higher rating. As it is, we give it a 7 out of 10.
    OUR WORD TO PARENTS:
    It's doubtful any kids will want to see this film, but if they do, here are the highlights of the more severe material. There are several sex scenes as an affair is carried out between Katharine and Almasy, and while the actual encounters aren't overly torrid, they are full of heavy sensuality. In addition, there is female full frontal nudity seen twice in one scene and another woman's bare breasts are seen in another. Profanity is limited to several uses of the "f" word and there's the usual amount of wartime drinking and smoking. There are several wartime related violent scenes, and blood and gore is rather heavy, especially when Almasy is seen with a severely burned face. The last scene of note is one where a man is threatened to have this fingers cut off and a thumb is seen being sliced with lots of blood. If your kids are interested in seeing this film, we suggest you check out the scene listings under all of the categories listed below.

    ALCOHOL OR DRUG USE
  • Almasy and the other pilots drink champagne.
  • Caravaggio is addicted to morphine and is seen shooting up several times.
  • People drink cocktails and champagne in a bar.
  • Geoffrey smokes and drinks while waiting for Katharine to return from her affair.
  • Almasy turns up drunk at a dinner while others there are drinking champagne.
  • People and soldiers drink after hearing that the Germans have surrendered.
  • Almasy implores Hana to end his life with a morphine overdose and she reluctantly complies.
  • BLOOD/GORE
  • Almasy is severely burned across his entire body. His face is seen right after the accident and is a seared, bloody mess. Later, his scarred face and hands are seen.
  • More bloody war victims are seen.
  • The victim of a mine explosion is bloody.
  • A nurse, under orders from German officers, takes a straight razor and slices into Caravaggio's finger and blood spills out. Later, his thumbless hands are seen (not bloody).
  • A man is a little bloody after a booby trapped statue has gone off.
  • There's a little bit of blood on the cockpit windshield after Geoffrey has tried to crash his plane onto Almasy.
  • DISRESPECTFUL/BAD ATTITUDE
  • Caravaggio is a self admitted thief and steals Almasy's morphine for himself.
  • We learn that Almasy traded the Allies maps of North Africa to the Germans.
  • FRIGHTENING SCENES
  • Some of the wartime scenes listed under "Violence" may be tense for some viewers.
  • Kip and another solider slowly search for road mines after a jeep has been blown up. Hana, unaware of what she's doing as her friend has just died, walks down the road oblivious to the danger that may lurk inches away. The others yell at her to stop and then slowly guide her back to safety.
  • Kip stops Hana from playing a piano that may be booby trapped and slowly searches for the possible bomb.
  • A man falls from a moving truck and rolls down a sand dune. The truck then follows his course and rolls down the dune as well.
  • A sandstorm sweeps over Almasy, Katharine and the rest of their team that's been stranded in the desert. When they awaken the next morning, they are horrified to discover that the other team members and their truck are completely buried under the sand. They then frantically dig to find them.
  • Caravaggio is captured by the Germans at gunpoint. They interrogate him and threaten to cut off his fingers if he doesn't give out any information. To prove their point, a nurse with a straight razor is brought in and begins to cut off his thumb, and there's a great deal of blood. Later, we learn that they cut off both thumbs.
  • There is a very tense scene where Kip is defusing a large bomb. A parade of tanks approaches and causes the ground to shake, thus raising the risk of setting off the bomb. He races to snip the right wire before it goes off.
  • GUNS/WEAPONS
  • Antiaircraft gun: Used to shoot down Almasy's biplane.
  • Bombs: Fall on a red cross camp.
  • Land mines/Bobby traps: Used to kill several people in two scenes.
  • Handgun: Fired in the air by Kip to get Hana to stop playing a piano that may be booby trapped.
  • Machine guns/Handguns: Aimed by the Germans at Caravaggio as they capture him.
  • IMITATIVE BEHAVIOR
  • Phrases: "Shut up" and "Bastard."
  • Several of the characters ride on top of the trucks (since there's no more room inside) and one of them hangs upside down to talk to the driver (and ends up falling off the truck).
  • JUMP SCENES
  • None.
  • MUSIC (SCARY/TENSE)
  • Despite the several tense scenes that are present, there's only a mild amount of tense music.
  • MUSIC (INAPPROPRIATE)
  • None.
  • PROFANITY
  • 5 "f" words (2 used sexually), 1 "ass" word, 1 hell, and 2 uses of "Jesus Christ," "Jesus," and "My God," and 1 use each of "God," "Swear to god," and "Oh God," as exclamations.
  • SEX/NUDITY
  • Hana reads a story to Almasy (that was originally told to him by Katharine) about a queen who was seen completely naked by another man.
  • Almasy and Katharine passionately kiss and he fondles her breasts. Moments later he tears open her dress and it's implied that they have sex.
  • Later, she joins him in the bathtub and there is female full frontal nudity. Moments later, she gets out of the tub and there's a longer view of female full frontal nudity.
  • There is a very sensual scene between Almasy and Katharine where he slowly begins to undress her and then manually stimulates her with his hand. That's not actually seen, but her pleasured reaction to it is. They then have sex standing up against a wall and while there's no nudity, there is sexual movement.
  • Katharine's bare breast is seen.
  • It's implied that Hana and Kip have slept together and her bare breasts are later seen.
  • SMOKING
  • Hana occasionally smokes.
  • People smoke in the Clifton camp.
  • People smoke in a bar.
  • Geoffrey and Caravaggio smoke in their office.
  • Geoffrey smokes and drinks while waiting for Katharine to return from her affair.
  • TENSE FAMILY SCENES
  • None.
  • TOPICS TO TALK ABOUT
  • Almasy's burn scars, and how children shouldn't stare, make fun of, or be scared of people who may happen to look the way he does
  • World War II.
  • VIOLENCE
  • Almasy's biplane is shot down by antiaircraft fire and crashes to the ground causing him to be severely burned.
  • A heavy artillery barrage hits the red cross camp where Hana is stationed.
  • A jeep runs over a mine in the road and blows up, killing all three on board.
  • Hana reads a story to Almasy (that was originally told to him by Katharine) about a queen who was seen completely naked by another man. The queen then told the man that he must die for what he has seen or kill the king and take his place. And so, the story goes, the man killed the king.
  • Katharine smacks and hits Almasy several times before they finally embrace.
  • Caravaggio is captured by the Germans at gunpoint. They interrogate him and threaten to cut off his fingers if he doesn't give out any information. To prove their point, a nurse with a straight razor is brought in and begins to cut off his thumb, and there's a great deal of blood. Later, we learn that they cut off both thumbs. He also states that he found the officer responsible for that and killed him.
  • A booby trapped statue kills one man and injures several others (not on screen).
  • Geoffrey tries to crash his plane onto Almasy and ends up dying and injuring Katharine who was also on board.
  • Almasy is hit on the back of his head and knocked out by soldiers.
  • Almasy attacks a guard and elbows and punches him several times. He finally chokes the man until he's unconscious and then escapes.
  • Almasy implores Hana to end his life with a morphine overdose and she reluctantly complies.



  • Reviewed November 14, 1996

    Other new and recent reviews include:

    [Collateral Beauty] [La La Land] [Manchester By The Sea] [Rogue One: A Star Wars Story]

    Privacy Statement and Terms of Use and Disclaimer
    By entering this site you acknowledge to having read and agreed to the above conditions.

    All Rights Reserved,
    ©1996-2017 Screen It, Inc.