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Love film closes festival 

Shakira, who sings on the film's soundtrack, attracted the most attention, posing for photographers in a tight, leopard-print mini-dress, but fans screamed hysterically for actors Benjamin Bratt and Javier Bardem as they stepped onto the red carpet.

Both star in the film, which centres on a 50-year love triangle set in the late 19th and first decades of the 20th century.

Bratt told reporters that as soon as he heard about the project he had to be involved.

"Look, there was no hesitation whatsoever," he said.

"I mean there were just too many reasons to do it, not doing it wasn't even a consideration."

Making the movie cemented some special relationships for the actor, who added: "Everyone there, truly from the top down, was just overjoyed to be there and we formed some really good friendships, Javier and myself.

"There's a lot of incredible talent that was part of that whole ensemble, hopefully the film shows it."

Oscar-nominated actor Bardem said he was also determined to be a part of the film from the outset.

"Once I knew that the novel was going to happen I went to talk to (the director) and show myself to say 'well in case you need me I'll be here' - lucky enough he called me back," Bardem said.

see a film clip from the behind the scenes:


Love In The Time of Cholera ( ** )Love film

November 13, 2007 Bill Wine - Celebrity News Service Movie Critic found at

2hr 20min - Rated R - Drama

The protagonist exhibits extraordinary loyalty and patience.

Well, try to borrow some: you'll need extreme stick-to-itiveness to slog through this handsome but seemingly endless romance-a-thon.

Love in the Time of Cholera is a sprawling saga of unfulfilled love, spanning a fifty-year period from the late nineteenth to the early twentieth century.

It's been adapted from the 1985 novel by Nobel Prize winner Gabriel Garcia Marquez, and those of us who have not read it can assume that it's been a bumpy transformation from page to screen.

Javier Bardem plays telegraph operator Florentino Aziza, who is devoted to Fermina Daza, portrayed by Italian actress Giovanna Mezzogiorno, a woman he is in love with in his twenties and whom he has loved since childhood.

But she, in part because of the wishes of her overbearing father (John Leguizamo), rejects Florentino's attentions and chooses to marry the wealthy Dr. Juvenal Urbino, played by Benjamin Bratt, who has successfully treated her during a raging cholera epidemic.

The lovesick Florentino vows to stay true to her anyway, in spirit if not in body.

And he relocates and takes a job a distance away working for his rich uncle (Hector Elizondo), an arrangement that Florentino's mother (Fernanda Montenegro) has promoted in hopes of helping her son get over his broken heart.

Meanwhile, Florentino works on his abiding case of unrequited love by engaging in hundreds of affairs over the next half-century, entering the cursory details in a diary.

But his feelings don't change and eventually he gets the chance to express them to the object of his unwavering affection.

That's because Dr. Urbino dies at age 80, following 50 years of marriage to Fermina, an occurrence that bookends the film.

So we experience the Florentino-Fermina courtship, breakup and aftermath in flashback.

Director Mike Newell (Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, Donnie Brasco, Four Weddings and a Funeral, Enchanted April, Into the West), working from a screenplay by Oscar winner Ronald Harwood (The Pianist), turns this Latin American classic into an English-language film, set and shot in the seacoast town of Cartagena, Colombia.

But Newell, who's nothing if not versatile, never quite captures the right tone. Not only is the array of accents distracting, the feeling persists that far too much has been lost in translation for the dialogue to be taken seriously.

The vein of humor than runs throughout is provided mostly by the hangdog Florentino's numerous sexual liaisons. Actor Bardem may compel all these women, but the shambling character he plays makes us wonder what all the fuss is about.

And the sexual tryst scenes, not in the least convincing anyway, are played for laughs that never come.

The combination of wistfulness and naughtiness just doesn't work. The film seems so flamboyantly melodramatic that, at times, it verges on self-parody, as if it were a preposterously extended Saturday Night Live sketch.

This unabashedly romantic drama and its portrait of enduring and undying love--of the paths of star-crossed soulmates eventually converging--has a sense of time and place. But it suffers from self-importance and seems to have no sense at all of its own occasional ridiculousness.

The casting and acting are shaky at best, even defeating Bardem, a world-class performer who rarely makes a false move. He does here.

However, the worst overacting offender by far is Leguizamo, who is so far over the top, he must think he's in a cartoon.

And the radiant Catalina Sandino Moreno, playing Fermina's cousin, suggests that the film might have benefited greatly from her and the somewhat bland Ms. Mezzogiorno switching roles.

As for the crucial makeup of aged characters, which gets extensive screen time, it doesn't come close to passing muster.

The director wants us to admire the main character's devotedness. Instead, we just want to yell at him: "Get over it already."

Love in the Time of Cholera is a wearying tale about the persistence of love that takes a lot of time to do very little that we love.

This is an international trailer for 'Love in the Time of Cholera'. Featuring the new song 'love film Shakira Despidida' . In theaters this November from 20th Century Fox and Stone Village Pictures.    

Posted with permission from Stone Village Pictures


Making ‘Love Film’

Bratt has ‘Time’ of his life adapting Garcia Marquez classic

found at Tuesday, November 13, 2007 By Stephen Schaefer 

Benjamin Bratt stars in ‘Love in the Time of Cholera,’ a film based on the novel by Gabriel Garcia Marquez.

Acclaimed author Gabriel Garcia Marquez’s novel “Love in the Time of Cholera” was first published in 1985. Twenty-two years later, the classic South American romance has finally made it to the big screen.

The delay wasn’t for lack of trying. Producer Scott Steindorf had “lobbied Garcia Marquez every day for two years for film rights,” said Benjamin Bratt, who stars in the film version, which opens Friday.

The reason so many have been wanting to see a movie made, he explained, is simply Marquez. “The text is damned near sacred. It’s one of the greatest pieces of literature ever. You don’t have to be an avid reader to see that. It helps you to see what love is; the entirety of the book is a meditation on love. Our task was to capture the essence of the book, a tricky thing to do.”

In “Love,” Florentino Arizo (played by Javier Bardem) becomes smitten as a teenager by Fermina Daza (Italian actress Giovanna Mezzogiorno) and vows to love her for eternity. But her father (John Leguizamo) opposes the union and she marries Bratt’s wealthy Dr. Juvenal Urbino. “Florentino pursues his love from a completely passionate, heart-centered place as opposed to my character, whose passion is initially from his loins,” Bratt said. “But we end up like a lot of married couples as old friends.”

Though frequently seen on “Law & Order” reruns, Bratt’s been busy on projects closer to home. “I’ve been busy parenting,” said the 43-year-old actor. Married to Talisa Soto since 2002, he has a daughter, Sophia, about to turn 5and his son, Mateo, had his second birthday in October.

Since “Love” finished filming last December, “I’ve coasted really on the high of this,” he said. “I’ve just been waiting for the next experience that could get close to half of what this was like. This was the best experience of my life, professionally speaking.”




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