Strapless [1989]

Genre: Drama, Romance
In this poetic tale, acclaimed playwright and director David Hare explores the eternal enigmas of love and desire. An American doctor living in Britain, Lillian (Blair Brown), who is almost 40 and newly single, is romanced by a charming entrepreneur named Raymond (Bruno Ganz) during a European vacation. What seems to be an unlikely coupling blossoms into love as the seductive, spontaneous Raymond teaches guarded Lillian about the joys of pure passion. But is the cryptic Raymond all that he seems to be? Is their whirlwind, fairy-tale courtship simply based on a desire to escape the banality of everyday life? And can independent Lillian truly commit to him with the reality of a looming doctors' strike and her single, freewheeling sister's (Bridget Fonda) pregnancy? Exquisitely photographed by Andrew Dunn, Hare's intelligent film uses subtle flourishes to explore Lillian's fear of commitment, Raymond's obsession with everlasting romantic love, and how his deceptions ultimately transform both their lives. --Bryan Reesman

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