Source: Catholic News Service
Picturesque but utterly vapid 19th-century period piece about a French ex-soldier (Michael Pitt) sent to Japan by a silk merchant (Alfred Molina) to purchase healthy eggs to restore the local silk business ravaged by a silkworm-egg epidemic; he becomes obsessed by a concubine (Sei Ashina) of the baron (Koji Yakusho) with whom he does business, while his schoolteacher wife (Keira Knightley) waits patiently behind. Francois Girard directs the story at an excruciatingly slow pace, and Pitt's droning narration -- he and the other French characters speak with flat American accents -- together with dialogue that is less than inspired create a general tedium unredeemed by a final plot twist. Upper female nudity, nongraphic sexual encounters, adultery theme, a restrained brothel scene and the image of a hanging corpse. The USCCB Office for Film & Broadcasting classification is A-III -- adults. The Motion Picture Association of America rating is R -- restricted. Under 17 requires accompanying parent or adult guardian.
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