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At-A-Glance Film Reviews

The Claim (2000)



Reviews and Comments

The idea of The Claim is an interesting one: set Thomas Hardy's The Mayor of Casterbridge in 1867 California. The setting is successful; in fact, the story appears to have been originally intended for the Old West, so well does it fit there. But that's where my interest ends. Thomas Hardy's work should stay in books. In spite of a couple of visually compelling scenes, this movie feels little more like a light version of the novel: same substance, but less of it. What's the point? It doesn't help that the story, condensed from a novel into a two hour film, is still somehow incredibly slow-paced.

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