Back left
Back right

Winter’s Tale Blu-ray + DVD Review

Reviewed by on Jun 24, 2014
Rating: 3 Star Rating

Talk about your timeless romances, this one lasts more than a century. Winter’s Tale, based upon the popular novel, has it all; fantasy, action, good vs. evil, flying horses, time travel and top notch acting. Read Kidzworlds Blu-ray + DVD review!

By: Lynn Barker

Down on his luck thief Peter Lake (Colin Farrell) breaks into rich Beverly Penn’s (Jessica Brown-Findlay) house but she becomes the thief when she steals his heart forever. Problem is she is slowly dying of consumption (tuberculosis) and he’ll have to fight an evil demon (Russell Crowe) to save her and keep them together. Talk about a high maintenance relationship!

Peter and Beverly at the ballPeter and Beverly at the ballCourtesy of Warner Bros.

Story Goes

In 1916 NYC, immigrant Peter Lake, a thief, leaves his mentor Pearly Soames, a demon in disguise, and wants to go straight. Peter’s guardian angel in the form of a beautiful white horse, encourages him to steal from one last mansion where he meets beautiful Beverly Penn who is dying of tuberculosis. The two fall in love.

Hoping to stop a miracle that will tip the good/evil balance toward good, Pearly must put an end to this relationship. Peter and Beverly have escaped to the Penn family summer home where Peter is able to save the house from a fire. Beverly believes that everyone has a miracle inside them. He hasn’t lived his yet.

Beverly dressed for a danceBeverly dressed for a danceCourtesy of Warner Bros.

One of Pearly’s minions poisons Beverly’s drink and she dies. Pearly nearly kills the immortal Peter in a fight but he survives with amnesia for a century with only vague memories of Beverly. In 2014, Peter bumps into a girl named Abby and meets her mother, Virginia Gamely (Jennifer Connelly). Young Abby is also gravely ill. Peter slowly starts remembering his past and realizes that saving Abby will be his miracle. Meanwhile Pearly has discovered that Peter didn’t die years ago after all and is rededicated to killing him.

Virginia (Jennifer Connelly) with her sick daughter AbbyVirginia (Jennifer Connelly) with her sick daughter AbbyCourtesy of Warner Bros.

The magical horse flies Virginia, Peter and Abby to the old Penn lake house but Pearly is there with his men. The horse breaks ice on the lake to kill the evil men and Peter and Pearly duke it out. Will Peter save Abby? Will he ever be magically reunited with Beverly?

Peter and Beverly on the magical white horsePeter and Beverly on the magical white horseCourtesy of Warner Bros.

Special Features

Behind the Scenes- Winter’s Tale: A Timeless Love – This is a short-ish making-of featurette starting with Jessica and Colin, who have obvious chemistry, talking about the love story, their characters (over clips from the film) and Russell Crowe discussing his baddie character. Writer/Director Akiva Goldsman tells us what difficulty he had adapting the almost 1,000-page novel to screen etc. He obviously loved the book. Interesting.

Behind the Scenes-Characters of Good and Evil – More with Akiva Goldsman on the themes of light in the film and making the romance and magic come to life. Jessica, Colin and Russell talk about working with one another and we see Colin and Russell practicing their big fight on a stage against green screen.

Evil Pearly (Russell Crowe) plots against PeterEvil Pearly (Russell Crowe) plots against PeterCourtesy of Warner Bros.

I liked most a section about the four white horses used for the film’s magical horse. Really cool to see these beautiful animals and Colin riding one. Loved it.

Additional and Extended Scenes -  Several scenes – all enhance the movie but none change the storyline although some are very touching.

Pearly (Russell Crowe) confronts Beverly (Jessica Brown Findlay)Pearly (Russell Crowe) confronts Beverly (Jessica Brown Findlay)Courtesy of Warner Bros.

Wrapping Up

It had to be difficult to adapt a 1,000-page book into a 2 hour film. Some of the story seems illogical but the movie looks gorgeous. You can root for Peter and Beverly like you might have rooted for Rose and Jack in Titanic and Russell’s Crowe’s evil Pearly makes for a scary nemesis throughout.  

Peter with amnesia in present dayPeter with amnesia in present dayCourtesy of Warner Bros.

Winter’s Tale has no giant disaster and adds fantasy elements but the timeless love story is still featured. If you did read the novel, you might be disappointed that a lot is cut out.  If you didn’t, you might be unsure of how the miracles and fate all tie together.

None-the-less, for an involving, beautiful to look at and romantic night on your couch, Winter’s Tale fills the bill to rent or buy. We go at least 3 stars.

Winter’s Tale Blu-ray + DVD Rating: 3

Winter's Tale Blu-ray and DVD cover artWinter's Tale Blu-ray and DVD cover artCourtesy of Warner Bros.

Winter’s Tale is now available on Blu-ray + DVD!