The problem of coming to terms with reality is the simplest explanation for this blatant, fake European art film directed by American Philip Kaufman.
Lengthily elaborated from Milan Kundera’s bestseller, it concerns womanising surgeon Tomas (Daniel Day-Lewis) who is enjoying a purely sexual relationship with like-minded painter Sabina (Lena Olin) in Prague in 1968 until his free-spirited philosophy is challenged when he falls in love with young waitress Tereza (Juliette Binoche).
Then Soviet tanks invade Czechoslovakia . . .
Some wonderful atmospherics of a besieged culture don’t make up for the fact that, at just under three hours, it runs out of important things to say – though that doesn’t stop this slice of coffee table eroticism trying to say them.
Derek De Lint