Tiff Presents The Invisible Woman

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Date(s) - Monday, February 24, 2014
12:00 am

Cineplex Odeon Winston Churchill 24


Ralph Fiennes (The English Patient, Coriolanus) directs and stars alongside Felicity Jones (Hysteria, Like Crazy) in this passionate period drama about the secret love affair of one of the greatest figures in literary history.

In 1857, actress Nelly Ternan was performing in London’s Haymarket Theatre when she was first spotted by Charles Dickens. Ternan was 17, while Dickens was 45 and had been married some 20 years. The two began an affair, which was kept a secret from the general public for the duration of their lives. Theirs has since become one of the great love stories in literary history, as alluring for the speculation it inspires as for the details on record as fact.

Based on Claire Tomalin’s biography of the same name, The Invisible Woman is a rapturous chronicle of Ternan and Dickens’s relationship, which prompted the end of Dickens’s marriage, survived a train crash, inspired characters and scenarios in some of the author’s most beloved novels, and continued until his death in 1870.

Jones’s performance as Ternan brims with passion and intelligence — the latter quality being one of the things that drew Dickens to Ternan in the first place. Dickens himself is embodied by Fiennes as a complicated artist torn between his desires and ideals and his need to uphold tradition and avoid scandal. Enveloped in opulent period detail, The Invisible Woman brings us closer to this giant of nineteenth-century prose — and to the woman who sustained his lust for life in his final years.

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