The Europeans


(out of 5)

Dry adaptation of the novel by Henry James, about two European visitors, a brother and sister, who show up unexpectedly on the doorstep of their uncle’s house in Boston and are immediately the talk of the town. The brother () becomes a role model to the local gentlemen and begins a romance with one of the local young ladies, while his sister () entertains a gentleman admirer while waiting for her divorce from a European count to come through. Are these penniless visitors truly as enamored of their hosts as they seem, or are they just using them for survival? A reverse of the typical Jamesian scenario examines Europeans in America instead of the other way around, and though it is one of his most entertaining and insightful novels, the movie version is lifeless. The Merchant Ivory team did a far better job with The Bostonians, but on the whole their adaptations of E.M. Forster’s novels succeeded a whole lot better than anything they were ever able to do with James.

Merchant Ivory Productions

United Kingdom, 1979

Directed by

Screenplay by , based on the novel by

Cinematography by

Produced by

Music by

Production Design by

Costume Design by

Film Editing by

Academy Awards 1979

Cannes Film Festival 1979

Golden Globe Awards 1979

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