The Wings of the Dove: Synopsis

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lain Softley's THE WINGS OF THE DOVE brings a contemporary sense of intensity, sensuality and romantic intrigue to Henry James' tale of passion, betrayal and the transformation of three people who attempt to manipulate love for selfish and selfless purposes. Kate Croy (Helena Bonham Carter) is a spirited, intelligent woman who finds herself in a struggle between her head and her heart, between the safety of 19th century society and the freedom of 20th century passion. Taken in by a wealthy aunt (Charlotte Rampling) in the wake of her mother's death, Kate enters an alluring world of fashionable London townhouses and society parties - a world in which marriage to a wealthy suitor perpetuates a rigid class system in which she is now an elite. For Kate, marriage is more than a passageway to comfort and wealth; it is also the key to keeping her destitute father (Michael Gambon) safe from harm.

But Kate is also in love - illicitly in love with a man who does not fit into her aunt's world. She has been secretly involved with the common journalist Merton Densher (Linus Roache). As her aunt soon makes clear, Kate must make an impossible choice: either marry the man she loves and lose all chance at a life of wealth and social standing or leave her lover immediately to assume her rightful place in society. As she faces this dilemma, American heiress Millie Theale (Alison Elliott) arrives in London.

Like Kate, Millie is bold, beautiful and sharp - but she is also fabulously wealthy. Like Kate, Millie has a tragic secret. The two become close friends - and Merton accompanies Kate and Millie on a trip to Venice, where passions are lit amidst the whirl of the masked Carnival. But behind the friendship lingers Kate's ingenious solution to her lovers' dilemma - a solution that will lead all three into a world of dizzying turns and unexpected consequence.

Miramax Films presents a Renaissance Films production of an lain Softley film, THE WINGS OF THE DOVE. lain Softley directs Hossein Amini's screenplay, which was inspired by Henry James' novel. Bob Weinstein, Harvey Weinstein and Paul Feldsher served as Executive Producers, while Stephen Evans and David Parfitt were Producers on the film, which was photographed by Eduardo Serra. John Beard was responsible for the production design, while Thriq Anwar was the film editor and Ed Shearmur did the music. Sandy Powell created the costumes and Michelle Guish was in charge of casting. The film stars Helena Bonham Carter, Linus Roache, Allison Elliott, Elizabeth McGovern, Michael Gambon, Alex Jennings and Charlotte Rampling.

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