FILM | Love in the Time of Cholera

Date created: 07.06.2016.
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DSF & Dubrovnik Cinemas 

Love in the Time of Cholera

drama, romance 

2007, US,  New Line Cinema, 2h 19min 


Director: Mike Newell

Writers: Ronald Harwood (screenplay), Gabriel García Márquez (novel)

Stars: Javier Bardem, Giovanna Mezzogiorno, Benjamin Bratt...

Based on the novel of the same name by Gabriel García Márquez, it tells the story of a love triangle between Fermina Daza (played by Giovanna Mezzogiorno) and her two suitors, Florentino Ariza (Javier Bardem) and Doctor Juvenal Urbino (Benjamin Bratt) which spans 50 years, from 1880 to 1930. In late 19th century Cartagena, a river port in Colombia, Florentino Ariza falls in love at first sight with Fermina Daza. They secretly correspond, and she eventually agrees to marry him, but her father discovers their relationship and sends her to stay with distant relatives (mainly her grandmother and niece). When she returns some years later, Fermina agrees to marry Dr. Juvenal Urbino, her father's choice. Their 50-year marriage is outwardly loving but inwardly marred by darker emotions. Fermina's marriage devastates Florentino, who vows to remain a virgin, but his self-denial is thwarted by a tryst. To help him get over Fermina, his mother throws a willing widow into his bed, and he discovers that sex is a very good pain reliever, one he uses to replace the opium that he had habitually smoked. He begins to record and describe each of his sexual encounters, beginning with the widow, and eventually compiles over 600 entries. A lowly clerk, he plods resolutely over many years to approach the wealth and social standing of Dr. Urbino. When the now-elderly doctor dies suddenly, Florentino immediately and impertinently resumes courting Fermina.

It was the first filming of a García Márquez novel by a Hollywood studio, rather than by Latin American or Italian directors.