The Bronte Sisters ★★


Strike one: biopic. Strike two: biopic about writers. Strike three: Biopic about writers who led utterly uneventful lives, apart from their writing. (Plus all the Brontës died young, so at a certain point you're just waiting for the entire cast to keel over.) Without robust subject matter, Téchiné tends toward tasteful tedium, and here he only comes alive when depicting Branwell's ill-fated affair with (yes, this is historically true, albeit not known with 100% certainty) Mrs. Robinson. Emily wanders the heath ("ah, so that's where" kill me), Charlotte mostly frets, and Anne is about as vivid in this film as she is in literary history. Hopefully Apocalypse Now screened immediately after it at Cannes '79 and napalmed its feeble memory.