the age of innocence movie title

Movie Review: The Age of Innocence

The Age of Innocence is a movie adaptation of Edith Wharton’s novel . It is a poignant tale of unrequited love set in late 19th century America.

The movie showcases New York society in the late 19th century. It shows the strict conventions of this uppercrust  society. Altthough none of them are nobility, these prople live and behave like royalty. A few of them, like the heroine’s grandmother Mrs. Mingott amd an elderly couple, the van Schuylers, set the example of behaviour. Everyone else must follow suit. As in any closenit community, gossip and scandal are rife.

Ellen (Michelle Pfeiffer) and Newland (Daniel DayLewis) have always had a tendre for each other. Ellen is back in NewYork, having left an aristocratic but unfaithful husband in Europe. Newland, though engaged to be married to Ellen’s cousin May (Winona Ryder), finds his passion for Ellen rekindled.

the age of innocence ellen and newland

What follows is a tale of snatched moments and wistful glances. Ellen and Newland, though passionately in love, behave with the decorum expected of them by society. Surprisingly, the thing that conveys the intensity of passion is the restraint shown by them.

Fans of Downton Abbey will enjoy the setting for it shows the American upper class. The mansions, banquets, balls, gowns, furniture and flowers are spectacular and one step above Downton.

The movie is made into an epic by the expert direction of Martin Scorcese. The cinematography is breathtaking, The viewer is treated to beautiful sunsets and lush gardens. A particularly beautiful scene is Newland’s fiancee sitting in a garden with vistas of blooming flowerbeds, The ballroom scene is expertly choreographed and photographed. The outdoor and indoor photography are both superb.

the age of innocence newland finds may in the garden

This 1993 period drama is a treat to watch. I was lucky to catch it on Netflix and saw it once for the story and twice for the beautiful scenes.

Starring–Michelle Pfeiffer, Daniel Day-Lewis, Joanne Woodward

Director–Martin Scorsese

Genre—-Period drama

PG 13+


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13 thoughts on “Movie Review: The Age of Innocence

  1. I loved the book. Edith Wharton is a great writer, I can read her books and enjoy them more than Henry James (very similar style). I think the first time I came across Edith Wharton was with her unfinished novel “The Buccaneers” But I do find it hard when the main character who you care about has a moral dilemma. Often these two authors set you up to want the character you love to do “the wrong thing” because doing the right thing will be so unbearable.

    Nonetheless, I have enjoyed all the Edith Wharton and Henry James novels I have read…I just have to come away from them and not let my heart justify things.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Okay ! It’s great to know you enjoy these authors too. The Buccanneers was the first Edith Wharton novel that I read.
      Have you read E.M. Forster, F.Scott Fitzgerald and Virginia Woolf, ?
      Some more of my favourites.



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