Dangerous Beauty

This lengthy 16th century romp detailing the life of Venetian courtesan Veronica Franco (McCormack) is so awash in '60s costume kitsch, old-fashioned sexual banter and feeble innuendo as to make a mockery of its putative celebration of the self-emancipating efforts of its low born heroine. Poetry loving Veronica can't wed her dashing aristo Marco Venier (Sewell), since he's bound for a marriage of convenience. Her mother Paola (Bisset) steps in to announce, shockingly, 'You will be a courtesan, like your mother!', proceeding to teach her the ropes. Before you know it, this gifted student is jousting with verses against court poet Maffio Venier (Platt), and bedding Doges, cardinals, cabbages and kings, while outside the pox, the plague and puritanism rage. There are few traces of irony, intended fun, or Casanova-style exoticism here: the director may intened a feminist Visconti, but he ends up with a Zalman King Red Shoe Diary crossed with a Dick Lester Dumas adaptation. Only the finale, a preposterous trial with Veronica caught in a bitter war between church and state, raises the spirits.

Release details

Duration: 112 mins

Cast and crew

Director: Marshall Herskovitz
Screenwriter: Jeaninine Dominy
Cast: Catherine McCormack
Rufus Sewell
Oliver Platt
Moira Kelly
Fred Ward
Jacqueline Bisset
Peter Eyre
Naomi Watts
Jeroen Krabbé

Average User Rating

5 / 5

Rating Breakdown

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  • 1 star:0
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SLockster

This is a great film. It is about a different subject matter than most films approach, the main actors have real chemistry together and are totally believable and although it tries to bring in too many different elements to the story line i.e war, plague etc. it is a thought provoking and a feel good film which I saw 5 years back and have been thinking about until I found it again on DVD.

SLockster

This is a great film. It is about a different subject matter than most films approach, the main actors have real chemistry together and are totally believable and although it tries to bring in too many different elements to the story line i.e war, plague etc. it is a thought provoking and a feel good film which I saw 5 years back and have been thinking about until I found it again on DVD.