Man From Elysian Fields, The

MPAA Rating: R

Entertainment: +1 1/2

Content: -3 1/2

In this romantic drama, Andy Garcia stars as writer Byron Tiller, whose first book is not selling well. With finances getting tight, Byron submits his second manuscript to his publisher and is turned down. But Byron needs to support his wife Dena (Julianna Margulies) and son. A chance meeting with Luther Fox (Mick Jagger) introduces Byron to Elysian Fields, an escort service for well-to-do women. Reluctant at first, and questioning the moral implications, Byron eventually accepts the job of escorting Andrea Allcott (Olivia Williams). Because Andrea is the young wife of Pulitzer Prize winning author Tobias Allcott (James Coburn), soon Byron is collaborating with the old man on a final manuscript. However, Dena finds out about Byrons work as an escort and moves out. And Andrea plans to take his name off her husbands last book. Having lost everything, Byron tries to recover the important things in his life. The all-star cast helps lift this somewhat soap-opera story out of its dreary emotional pit, but limited release will lower audience draw. Byron rightly considers the escort service and questions the morality. But Fox assures him that most of the women only want companionship, not sex. However, Fox is also shown in an adulterous affair with a client (Angelica Huston). Sadly, Byron is too easily tempted by the attractive Andrea and has already slipped by lying about his work to Dena. Somewhat discomforting, Tobias condones and even seems to approve of his wifes adultery with Byron. He tells the young writer that a man should see that his wifes needs are taken care of. He also asks Byron to critique his latest work instead of his wife, since one cant trust the value system of a true love. Encouraged by Andrea to tell Tobias the truth about the manuscript, Byron hedges but then says the work is awful. Upset at first, Tobias wisely asks about ideas for improvement. The resulting collaboration is a masterpiece but, when Tobias dies, Andrea removes Byrons name to protect her husbands legacy. Addressing the subject of love on several levels, the story also looks at communication as the beginning of forgiveness. Forced to re-evaluate his life after losing credit on Tobias book, Byron writes his own story. On paper, he says what he couldnt find words to tell Dena, which opens the possibility of reconciliation. Nudity is avoided, but graphic sexual paintings and encounters are shown. Although adultery is ultimately shown as bad, Tobias condoning weakens the condemnation. Unfortunately, the dialogue is also filled with strong profanity and numerous obscenities. Despite some good messages, THE MAN FROM ELYSIAN FIELDS reads the wrong book.

Preview Reviewer: Paul Bicking
IDP, 1133 Broadway, Ste. 926, New York, NY 10010

The following categories contain objective listings of film content which contribute to the subjective numeric Content ratings posted to the left and on the Home page.

Crude Language: Many (18) times Mild 8, moderate 10

Obscene Language: Many (24) times F-word 12, s-word 9, other 1

Profanity: Many (10) times Regular 8 (GD 3, JC 2, C, G, for G sake 2); exclamatory 2 (OMG, OG)

Violence: Few times Moderate (punch, angry breaking of clothes racks)

Sex: Several times Implied and graphic (married couple in bed unconventional implied, implied adultery couple dressing, adultery graphic motion and sound few times)

Nudity: Once (male rear stage performers); Near Nudity few times (woman in underwear, woman in nightgown)

Sexual Dialogue/Gesture: Many times (reference to sexual release, comment about escort service, sexually graphic paintings, comment about hookers, comment that marriage is not stumbling block, wife suggestively models clothes, couple in bed joined by man)

Drugs: Few times alcohol drinking, cigarettes

Other: Man becomes escort to support family, older man condones wifes adultery, man lies to wife, message about love overlooking faults/ using success to enrich life, need for love in life, comment about recovering self-respect, communication opens possibility of forgiveness/reconciliation

Running Time: 105 minutes
Intended Audience: Adults

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