Set in the lower echelons of 1860s Paris, Therese Raquin, a sexually repressed beautiful young woman, is trapped into a loveless marriage to her sickly cousin, Camille, by her domineering aunt, Madame Raquin. Therese spends her days confined behind the counter of a small shop and her evenings watching Madame play dominoes with an eclectic group. After she meets her husband’s alluring friend, Laurent, she embarks on an illicit affair that leads to tragic consequences.


“In Secret” should’ve been a groundbreaking turn for Elizabeth Olsen. Unfortunately, she finds herself falling back into the trap that befalls all young actresses that try to take on period drama way too early. The original Zola novel was a tempestuous affair that described passion in a way that “Madame Bovary” gets so much false praise for having done. That being said, this material seems to have been adapted a ton around the world. What we get here is a hack production where Jessica Lange shows up at the needed times to give credibility.

Jessica Lange is an American treasure. Elizabeth Olsen, Tom Felton and Oscar Isaac are up-and-comers that are still finding a voice away from some of the bigger franchises that they have become entangled. That being said, not everyone is cut out to create period piece passions. Tom Felton plays Camille as sympathetic in the way that he seems doe-eyed and wanting for any shred of attention. It’s not attractive to be a big eyed puppy dog in a movie about adult intentions. Oscar Isaac continues to build upon his indie cred, as he gets ready to squander it all away in a galaxy far, far away. Still, no one really has that big moment.

The DVD comes with a Digital HD copy, commentary and deleted scenes as the special features. The Dolby 5.1 track is pretty clean. Plus, the transfer does what it can. Ultimately, it is standard definition and that works for what it is. In the end, I’d recommend a rental.


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