A penniless, amoral young man seduces rich women to avoid poverty. With Robert Pattinson, Uma Thurman, Kristin Scott Thomas, and Christina Ricci.
This movie was rubbish, pure and simple. Only, it was anything but pure and simple. Rather, in a complex turn of events, Pattinson manages to completely disgust and disenchant not only all of his fellow actors (save one) but also potentially every unlucky viewer of this morally bereft film. I, for one, am completely turned off by him. His sickly, pale, sleazy portrayal left me wondering how any woman could possibly want to be seduced by him.
In this sordid film, though, not one, but three married women succumb to his distasteful, selfishly inspired advances, and somehow, he still comes out on top. That is the ultimate disservice of this film. Pattinson’s character is so morally indigent, there is no way he should be rewarded for his unseemly behavior, and yet, we are supposed to sympathize with his plight? Root for him? Rejoice in his victory? I think not. Please, spare yourself this waste of time, and do not watch Bel Ami (especially if you have any interest in watching Pattinson as a romantic leading man again).
*My one concession is that the acting is very well-done, across the board. As much as I disliked the characters and the content of the film, on further reflection, I must admit that each actor’s portrayal was masterful, especially for those characters which were well outside the actor’s normal wheelhouse (ie: Kristin Scott Thomas and Christina Ricci). Even so, I cannot, in good conscience, commend the film.