Summary: An artist falls for a young married woman while he’s commissioned to paint her portrait during the Tulip mania of 17th century Amsterdam.
This is going to be a short review.
The Cast and Characters. I think the characters are inconsistent in how they are written. Considering the fact that the movie starts off with a sole focus and then does something different, it makes the characters and their motivations shift, but not like it would in a real human person. I think the acting is way better than the characters.
Dane DeHaan as Jan van Loos. It was cool seeing him as a leading romantic man and he’s good, like he always is good. His accent was pretty good.
Alicia Vikander as Sophia Sandvoort. She’s good too. Delicate but also passionate and crazy.
Christoph Waltz as Cornelis Sandvoort. Good actor, his character is a little sad at times, like emotionally and just like… “that’s sad” lol, Waltz has a good balance of appearing menacing but also a sad and desperate man.
Jack O’Connell as Willem. A young fisherman or whatever, he gets into the tulip business to make things great with his girl. He leaves for a while but when he’s around, he’s optimistic and likable.
Holliday Grainger as Maria. I probably liked her the most. She’s narrating the movie. She’s lively, sassy and seems to be loyal and I think she got the most development. Holliday Grainger was great, I think she was probably a standout in the film.
The Romance. When it was good, it was good. When it started between Jan and Sophia, it was very subtle and cute young love. It was the little looks, the little touches and when it got serious, their moments together was very passionate and I thought DeHaan and Vikander had good chemistry. The movie should have just focused on that because it was good.
Character Development. The main characters are supposed to be Sophia, Cornelis and Jan. I don’t usually like love triangles, I think they’re stupid and overused but I don’t mind it when it’s done well. We’re shown that Sophia is unhappy in her marriage with Cornelis, okay, then we meet Jan and they have passionate sex together when they meet but we never really see them talk which I thought it had the making of a good romance but didn’t follow through. It was so sudden how Jan just decided to switch into the Tulip business, outside of wanting to paint them because they’re beautiful. It was unsatisfying.
The Tulip Plot. I looked into this briefly, but this really did happen where Tulips were all the craze and people were bidding on them and what not. It’s not that interesting to be honest. I wanted the movie to focus on the whole thing with Sophia, Jan, Cornelis and all of that. It reminded me of a bunch of other movies In Secret in particular but I wish the movie would have stayed to that plot instead of adding in this Tulip business. It was stupid and I felt it brought the movie down quite a bit.
Stupid Characters. I liked the characters mostly, but too many dumb decisions. Willem’s character makes assumptions and it ruins a lot for him. Sophia makes a plan and then tries to take it back later. Jan has a plan and it just was out of character for him, Jan gets involved in some mess and some people come to collect and they won’t let him take care of business so they have to send a drunk and stuff gets messed up. Sophia offers to help Maria with something and she threatens her… I mean what? She just said she would help you. DUMB. It was like a dumb character fest.
Overall, I wanted to like it more than I did. I think it looks beautiful and it starts off with an interesting plot. I think the characters started off interesting because the story it was selling was interesting. The acting is good, all of the actors do their parts well and I think Dane DeHaan and Alicia Vikander have pretty good chemistry together which makes their romance cute. I think the side characters are more interesting in what’s going on with them, they seem to have a bit more of a focused plot compared to the main characters. Not only that, but this movie focuses way to much on the tulip thing that it prevents the main plot from being the most interesting which it should have been. The characters are stupid and make really stupid choices and I think the main characters are underdeveloped and underserved. This movie should have been at least a nice romance and it started off that way but the second half got stupid. Ugh. It’s a shame.
Rating: 1.5 out of 5 stars.
Have you seen Tulip Fever? Have you even heard of it? If you’ve seen it, tell me your thoughts on it.