Dangerous Liaisons Movie Analysis

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Dangerous Liaisons is an American-British film, directed by Stephen Frears, released in 1988. It is adapted from Christopher Hampton's play, itself adapted from Pierre Choderlos de Laclos's famous epistolary novel Les Liaisons Dangereuses. He has won three Oscars, including Christopher Hampton's Best Adaptation Screenplay. The film and the play change the original ending of the novel, in which Madame de Merteuil remains alone forever disfigured by her illness. In scene 43, the Marquise de Merteuil, jealous of Valmont's love of Tourvel, tells him the story of a man who, for fear of ridicule, had left his mistress, by saying: "It's not my fault." In the revolving staircase of the hotel, a recurring symbol of the machinations of libertines, she suggests to Valmont the scenario of the breakup. The sequence of the rupture does not exist in the novel: the letter 141 quotes the text of the anecdote, Valmont content to send the letter to Tourvel and to be surprised at her ack of reaction. Stephen Frears makes this sequence a…show more content…
It traces his life by comparing the author to her famous novel Dangerous Liaisons. The success of the scandal that has hosted Dangerous Liaisons is undoubtedly for many the ambiguity of the character of Laclos. How could a career officer, a good father and a good husband, write this burning epistolary novel? How could a man apparently so discreet have been in the turmoil of the Revolution, and take a not insignificant role? From there to deduce that Laclos was an embittered and revanchist, perhaps doubled by a redoubtable libertine, there was only one step, which was sometimes crossed very quickly, too much perhaps. According to Philip Thody “Laclos himself, unlike Valmont, was a very minor nobleman, whose dislike of the top aristocracy of the day may well have stemmed from the slowness with which, as a professional soldier, he obtained promotion in the artillery in the ancien
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