Edmond Dantes (James Caviezel) had the perfect life: Mercedes (Dagmara Dominczyk), a beautiful woman who adored him, a rising career at the shipyards where he was just promoted to first mate, Fernand Mondego (Guy Pearce), his loyal best friend, and who knows what other blessings on the horizon. Until it was all taken from him. A chance meeting with the exiled Napoleon (Alex Norton) placed him under suspicion of treason. However, J.F. Villefort (James Frain), the local head politician, believes Dantes is innocent. It appears that Dantes will be able to put this whole nightmare behind him, until Villefort discovers that the message Napoleon gave him was intended for his father. Desperate to hide his father's loyalty to Napoleon and to keep his political career going, Villefort sends Dantes to the Chateau d'If, a prison where people are sent to be forgotten.
Dantes spends 13 years in a small cell, left alone except for a yearly visit from the sadistic warden until a fellow inmate suddenly tunneled up through his floor. Abbe Faria (Richard Harris) had spent most of his life in d'If and had created an escape plan. He was digging a tunnel to the outside, but went the wrong way and ended up in Dantes' cell. As Dantes became friends with Faria, Faria became a mentor to him and taught him how to fight with a sword, how to read, and how to figure out what happened to put him in that awful place. Faria not only gave him hope, he gave him freedom and wealth beyond his wildest dreams...
Dantes recreated himself as The Count of Monte Cristo and set out to get his revenge on all those who betrayed him and ruined his life. First on his list was Fernand, his supposedly loyal friend, who turned him over to the police and married Mercedes. Then there was Villefort, who imprisoned a man he knew was innocent so he could keep his political career. There was also Mercedes, the woman he thought loved him, who married Fernand a few months after Dantes disappeared into d'If. Through careful planning and evaluation of his enemies' weaknesses, the Count of Monte Cristo was able to wreak his revenge...but at what cost?
This movie was quite entertaining and had some things added in to the original story to make it more appealing to movie-goers, which didn't bother me, but it was missing so much of the suspense and mind games that the count played in the book. In the book, the majority of the plot is the count carefully destroying his victims one by one without anyone ever knowing that he had a hand in their demise or guessing who he was, but in the movie, it was all over so quickly that his enemies barely had time to suffer. Still, the actors were well cast and the scenery was beautiful. The director did a very nice job at dusting this book off and giving it a bit of a new spin and making it appeal to the masses. I just hope that the movie will inspire people to go and read the book, as it is one of Dumas' best.
The review of this Movie prepared by Debbie
The exciting story of how, after being betrayed and wrongingly imprisoned by his best friend Ferdnand, Edmond Dantes escapes prison, obtains a new identity and becomes obsessed with obtaining revenge on Ferdnand and all who helped him, as well as confronting the woman that he loved. (Ferdnand had married her after Edmond's imprisonment.)
The review of this Movie prepared by Emily
A young sailor about to marry is framed into being thrown in prison by three men whould gain by it. While in prison, his father dies, his fiance marries one of the men, and all the men become important and successful. After many years in prison, he befriends an old man who teaches him and tells him of a valuable treasure. He escapes years later, finds the treasure, and uses the fortune to gain revenge. Based on the novel by Alexandre Dumas. Good period drama, a little good swordfighting.
The review of this Movie prepared by Zorikh Lequidre