Monday, May 25, 2009

Sirens (1994) [R] ***

Sirens is set in Australia, sometime in the 1930s, at the rural home of a controversial artist who paints sensual feminine images. A clergyman and his wife visit the artist and try to convince him to remove his most controversial painting from a new exhibit in Sydney. While Sirens is a vaguely erotic film, it's really about the classic conflict between artistic freedom of expression and censorship. The artist, played by Sam Neill, believes that the viewer must decide for himself or herself which images are unacceptable. The clergyman, played by Hugh Grant, believes that once the viewer has seen the images, the damage has been done, and it's too late. Both actors are excellent in their roles, and their verbal sparring is quite entertaining.

During their visit both the clergyman and his wife, wonderfully played by Tara Fitzgerald, are forced to deal with the erotic urges aroused in them by the artist's three lovely models - the Sirens - including supermodel Elle Macpherson and actress Portia de RossiSirens is full of symbolism, and the ending is surprising, and deliciously ironic. If you enjoy period films that deal with the subject of repressed sexuality, films like Belle Époque, Enchanted April or A Room with a View, you might really enjoy Sirens.

Labels: comedy, drama
Internet Movie Database
Tomatometer (critics=73, viewers=40)