Based on the literary classic by Thomas Hardy, FAR FROM THE MADDING CROWD is the story of independent, beautiful and headstrong Bathsheba Everdene (Carey Mulligan), who attracts three very different suitors: Gabriel Oak (Matthias Schoenaerts), a sheep farmer, captivated by her fetching wilfulness; Frank Troy (Tom Sturridge), a handsome and reckless Sergeant; and William Boldwood (Michael Sheen), a prosperous and mature bachelor. This timeless story of Bathsheba’s choices and passions explores the nature of relationships and love – as well as the human ability to overcome hardships through resilience and perseverance.
Typical to Thomas Hardy, he’s created a female character with a dilemma – see Tess of the d’Urbervilles – only this time it is ever so slightly more complicated. Ignoring the classic “love triangle” in Far from the Madding Crowd, we have effectively a “love square” with Bathsheba falling for no fewer than 3 men and getting herself in a right pickle. Who will she choose and for why? Whilst the constraints of the time – the etiquette, decorum & scandal if certain ways weren’t adhered to, this is in fact quite a modern tale for a story first written 200 odd years ago: how money can change everything and how peoples perception of others can change because of money and status.
Opening in the UK on May 1st, this is just about the only period / costume drama I’d actually like to see. The beautiful trailer is below.