The Tales of Hoffman

Director: Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger
Year Released: 1951
Rating: 2.0

Colorful production of the Offenbach opera about title poet Hoffmann and his stories about three different women he loved during three different phases of his professional career. The production work is marvelous (many of the sets are as amazing as they are in Black Narcissus), but unlike my immediate love for Bergman's film of The Magic Flute, I felt significantly less enthralled about this as I was watching it: perhaps it's the work itself or the likeability of the characters or maybe even the approach of the director - I'd argue that Bergman's adaptation is more creative in terms of technique while this is more remote, but I admit that I haven't seen the Bergman in years. I do know for sure that the first tale (that of the 'assembled' woman) is more of a 'developed' and dynamic piece than the more traditional (and more abbreviated) second and third tales, which might explain my flagging attention as the production reached its conclusion.