The English Patient
I hate movies that show you the end of something first. Int his case, a woman and a man crash in a plane. Although the guy survives, he's burned to a crisp and is probably going to die. He claims to not remember anything and is taken to a ruined monastery in Tuscany by a nurse named Hana (Juliette Binoche).
What exactly is going to happen in this monastery? Well, first of all we're going to learn who this guy is because if we didn't, you'd have a two-and-a-half hour movie about nothing more than someone dying of burns, which would really suck. Secondly, we're going to find out that he and the woman in the plane were lovers because if they were just there by coincidence, that would be stupid enough to merit bringing a Game Boy into the theater.
This film is based on a fairly difficult novel by Michael Ondaatje which doesn't have much dialogue, jumps around in time and takes place all over the world. Whatever possesses someone to try and adapt such a work is beyond my comprehension, but masochism probably has something to do with it.
A good rule of thumb, if you're truly set on wasting resources on such a project, is to have a protagonist people can care about. The burned guy, Count Laszlo de Almasy (Ralph Fiennes), is not that man. He's cold, annoying and hardly deserves to fall in love with Katherine (Kristin Scott Thomas) or have Juliette Binoche give him sponge baths. That kind of crap just isn't fair and ends up irritating people like me, who really do deserve to be given sponge baths by Juliette Binoche.
To spread the word about this The English Patient review on Twitter.To get instant updates of Mr. Cranky reviews, subscribe to our RSS feed.