Sylvia (2003 film)
Sylvia film poster
|Directed by||Christine Jeffs|
|Produced by||Alison Owen
|Written by||John Brownlow|
|Music by||Gabriel Yared|
|Editing by||Tariq Anwar|
|Distributed by||Focus Features (United States)|
|Running time||110 minutes|
Sylvia is a 2003 British biographical drama film directed by Christine Jeffs and starring Gwyneth Paltrow, Daniel Craig, Jared Harris, and Michael Gambon. It tells the true story of the romance between prominent poets Sylvia Plath and Ted Hughes. The film begins with their meeting at Cambridge in 1956 and ends with Sylvia Plath's suicide in 1963.
Born in Boston, Massachusetts in 1932, Plath developed a precocious talent as a writer, publishing her first poem when she was only eight years old. That same year, tragedy introduced itself into her life as Plath was forced to confront the unexpected death of her father. In 1950, she began studying at Smith College on a literary scholarship, and while she was an outstanding student, she also began suffering from bouts of extreme depression. Following her junior year, she attempted suicide for the first time. Plath survived, and, in 1955, she was granted a Fulbright Scholarship to study in England at the University of Cambridge. While in Great Britain, Plath met Ted Hughes, a respected author, who would later become the British Poet Laureate. The two fell in love and married in 1956. Marriage, family and a growing reputation as an important poet nonetheless failed to bring Plath happiness. She became increasingly fascinated with death, a highly visible theme in her later poetry and her sole novel, The Bell Jar. After Hughes left her for another woman, her depression went into a tailspin from which she never recovered.
The film received mixed to negative reviews from critics. Rotten Tomatoes gives it a "rotten" 37% approval rating from mainstream critics, giving the consensus, "This biopic about Sylvia Plath doesn't rise above the level of highbrow melodrama." 
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