So-so romantic melodrama set in 17th century Amsterdam (based on novel)
- Tulip Fever review by PV
I enjoyed watching this film, though yes, it does lapse into romantic melodrama - a tad Mills and Boon really. Tulip Fever was a best-selling novel, and I suspect 95% of the readership was female too - so it's one of those movies.
Oddly, for a movie based on tulips, there are very few flowers to be seen here. Maybe because it's mostly filmed in studios?
Some period detail is good and interesting, especially for those who previously knew nothing or little about the tulip bulb craze in Holland in the late 17th century - a financial bubble, repeated many times since (South Sea, Internet etc).
I did have an issue with the casting, though Tom Hollander is excellent as usual, here as a dodgy 'doctor'. Some great minor characters, and Judi Dench phones it in as an old nun.
I have seen a great many paintings of this golden age of Amsterdam, with wealthy businessmen, and not one was black - some servants were and sailors. But to cast a black actor as being central to the tulip trade is just plain silly - like casting a white ginger man as a Zulu chief. I wonder whether this is being loyal to the novel or something added for the sake of 'diversity'.
Anyway, if you enjoy long-winded romantic melodramas, then this is for you - though the plot is about as believable as Star Trek.
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