It’s November, and the leaves are falling. They crunch under your boots as you walk on campus, and the perfectly chilly weather allows us all to wear our favorite puffy jackets. But there’s one thing missing: the perfect fall movie. That's when you turn to “Winter’s Tale,” directed by Avika Goldsman and starring Colin Farrell. Maybe you watch “Winter’s Tale” alone with a warm cup of apple cider, or you invite a friend or significant other over to enjoy it alongside you. Either way, “Winter’s Tale” is the perfect movie for a cold autumn night.
The movie was originally a novel written by Mark Helprin, adapted in 2014, and floundered in its reviews and box-office earnings. But, in my opinion, t’s truly a hidden gem. Sure, there are a few cheesy scenes with some bad acting, but more frequently you’ll find yourself entranced in the world that Helprin created between Peter Lake (Farrell), love-interest Beverly Penn (Jessica Brown Findlay) and the main agent of evil, Pearly Soames (Russell Crowe).
The movie begins with Peter Lake robbing houses and avoiding his many enemies. After he finds a pegasus, his life begins to shift. The pegasus leads Peter to rob the home of Isaac Penn, an institutional figure within early 1900s New York. When he enters the home, he meets Beverly Penn, the daughter of Isaac, with who he promptly falls in love with. Together with Beverly, he spends his time in a trance of love, attempting to avoid Lucifer (Will Smith) and his agents, for reasons that the viewer doesn’t learn until the final act of the movie.
In his fight with Lucifer, Peter is thrown off of the Brooklyn Bridge, and left to die. After 100 years pass, you realize that Peter Lake never died, nor did he age. In the mid 2000s, Peter Lake is still alive, but cannot remember any details of his past life. He is kept alive, because in the movie universe, each person has one miracle, and cannot die until that miracle has been fulfilled.
“Winter’s Tale” is an odd, thought provoking movie that mixes reality and fantasy in a way that either makes total sense or perplexes the viewer. So, you will likely really love or really hate this movie, but I recommend it as an autumnal activity nonetheless.