• Publication date: July 26, 2011

Oscar And Lucinda Oscar And Lucinda

At an early age Oscar Hopkins (Ralph Fiennes) parted ways with his father, ...

At an early age Oscar Hopkins (Ralph Fiennes) parted ways with his father, denouncing a puritanical form of Christianity and instead accepting the Church of England's. He was an avid student of theology who, even in more liberal surroundings, was considered somewhat of a heretic by his peers. More specifically, Hopkins' colleagues were outraged by the clergyman's fervor for gambling and his ardent defense of its religious permissibility. Oscar argued that faith in God itself was a gamble, and that wagering on a racehorse or card game was no different. Hopkins eventually grew tired of England. In search of both a fresh flock and new experience, the theologian decided to migrate to what was then a new British colony: Australia. While in transit he meets Lucinda Leplastrier (Cate Blanchett), a glassmaker and Outback native visiting England to buy machinery for her recently acquired business. On the surface the pair appear to be an incompatible couple: Lucinda is wealthy and assertive while Oscar is poor and timid. Despite that, both reject society's expectations of their respective roles and subsequently find a common ground. Oscar achieves this with an unorthodox approach to ministry; Lucinda adopts a feminist worldview, a unique stance for women in the nineteenth century. They also share a love of gambling, and ignore those who shun their morally ambiguous pastime. Though Hopkins loves Lucinda, his timidness impedes him from bluntly saying so. That changes when the Reverend Dennis Hasset (Ciaran Hinds) begins to court Lucinda. To win the businesswomen's affection Oscar must appeal to her favorite vice, wagering not just money but his heart and soul in the process. Oscar and Lucinda was nominated for an Academy Award. It is based upon the acclaimed, identically titled novel by author Peter Carey. Rating: Rated R for a scene of sexuality, and for brief violence.