“My Cousin Rachel”

A Look at the Movies

CHICOPEE, Mass. (WWLP) – There’s never been a more mysterious woman in 19th century melodrama than “My Cousin Rachel”.

Rachel Weisz re-creates the role originally portrayed by Olivia De Havilland back in 1953. This classy re-make is every bit as mystifying as the original. A mysterious letter suggests Rachel may have murdered her lover.

Now Rachel’s come to live with the dead man’s nephew whose inherited the country estate.The mystery deepens when Sam Claflin becomes infatuated with the older woman he suspects of being a cold blooded killer.But she projects such innocence and so much warmth.

The gorgeous panoramic scenery of the English countryside intentionally clashes with the brooding, candle lit interior of the gothic estate where Claflin grapples with his conflicted feelings about his cousin Rachel.

The film’s only weakness is unavoidable. Claflin can’t come close to matching the seething quality of the legendary Richard Burton, who originated the role more than 60 years ago. But then who can?

It’s good for your sense of appreciation that “My Cousin Rachel” remains forever an enigma. “My Cousin Rachel” is a lavishly produced Victorian mystery that I’m surprised took more than 60 years to re-make.

Don’t be surprised that it deserves 3 stars.

I’m sure even Olivia De Havilland, the original Rachel, whose now 101 years old, would agree, this “My Cousin Rachel” is a darn good re-make.

Rated PG-13

1 hour 50 minutes

Rachel Weisz, Sam Claflin, Ian Glenn