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  • Lolita
    • Lolita
    • Runtime:127 min
    • Release Date:2017-01-24 14:26:07
    • Director: Adrian Lyne
    • Genres: Drama, Romance
    • Studio:


LOLITA by Adrian Lyne, was immediately and understandably compared to
Stanley Kubrick's adaptation of the novel by Vladimir Nabokov, and
although I think Kubrick made a wonderful film, what I do think
director Lyne's version does better, is the way it captures the tragedy
of it all, instead of the comedy. Tragedy in the sense that it dares
more than Kubrick's film did (which I believe has nothing to do with
the censorship in the 60ties), because director Lyne isn't interested
in sexually or provocatively exploiting the relationship between
Humbert (a marvelous Jeremy Irons) and Lolita/Dolores (Dominique
Swain), he makes it sort of enigmatic, carefully lingering and
beautiful. More faithful to the novel, the film successfully achieves
the great character nuance of the civilized and sophisticated Humbert
Humbert, and the way he falls completely in love with such a obnoxious
and difficult child, who's at the same time such an alluring, facetious
and sexual creature. Another stronghold for the film in its dignity as
an adaption of the novel, is Ennio Morricone's sweepingly romantic and
classic score. It may just be a notch better than Kubrick's film, and
for me personally, as an adaptation of the novel, it also rings more


Just as we know more about drugs than we did in the era of Timothy
Leary, attitudes toward an attraction of a mature male for a pre-teen
girl have changed so drastically in the sixty years since the novel was
written that it is impossible to present "Lolita" as a comedy, even a
dark one as Nabokov intended. There's nothing funny about pedophilia in
In the era of Jon Benet Ramsey and Megan's Law.

Yes, director Adrian Lyne's Humbert is a sensitive, cultured academic
plunged in an America of rural idiocy and cultural philistinism. (Note
how many times his simple, two-syllable name is mispronounced.) Now,
this might actually have happened or might be part of a sick delusion.
Everyone is so dense they can't see what child molester Humbert "sees":
that fourteen or twelve year old Lolita Haze is actually a little slut,
sexually aggressive, experienced, manipulative. And she's in it for the
money, too. Dimes and quarters to start, a whole lot more at the end.

But isn't this what every "short eyes" in prison or on death row tells
himself and everyone else: that his victim flirted with him, that she
wanted sex then demanded money to keep quiet, that she wasn't the
innocent child everyone took her for?

As other reviewers have pointed out, Jeremy Irons' portrayal of Humbert
Humbert is too sympathetic. He is too young, too handsome, too well
spoken and tastefully attired. And he's a victim, too, after all. The
childhood tragedy he suffered made him what he is. Dominique Swain in a
series of revealing outfits plays the nymphet to disturbing perfection.

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