About Mysteries of Lisbon
Mysteries of Lisbon Editorial Reviews
Based on a 19th-century novel that's usually characterized as sprawling, "Mysteries of Lisbon" is a hothouse melodrama seen through a cool, discerning eye. Director Rául Ruiz has called it one of his most theoretical films, but this multicourse (41/2 -hour) feast is no self-conscious demonstration of molecular gastronomy. The storytelling is straightforward, with a classical sheen, even as mischief and hallucination puncture the serene surface. The running time should not be cause for dismay; with 100-plus films to his credit, Ruiz is nothing if not a master of tone and pacing as he moves his players through the drawing rooms, hotels, convents and monasteries of Western Europe and, briefly, Brazil, unwrapping stories within stories within stories. --August 12, 2011 | By Sheri Linden, Special to the Los Angeles Times
Mysteries of Lisbon Product Description
Raul Ruiz's masterful adaptation of the eponymous nineteenth-century Portuguese novel (by Camilo Castelo Branco) evokes the complex intertwined narratives of Victor Hugo and Charles Dickens. The core story centers on Joao, the bastard child of an ill-fated romance between two members of the aristocracy who are forbidden to marry, and his quest to discover the truth of his parentage. But this is just the start of an engrossing tale that follows a multitude of characters whose fates conjoin, separate and then rejoin again over three decades in Portugal, Spain, France and Italy.
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