Original Sin

30 10 2007

Original Sin is a 2001 movie starring Angelina Jolie and Antonio Banderas. It is based on the novel Waltz into Darkness by Cornell Woolrich. Jolie was nominated for a Golden Raspberry Award in 2001 for Worst Actress for her work in Original Sin and Lara Croft: Tomb Raider. Most of the interest in Sin comes from the controversial sex scene between Banderas and Jolie, two of modern cinema’s most popular sex symbols.

Original Sin movie poster.jpgPlot summary

The movie flashes back and forth from the past to the present. A woman is awaiting her execution while she tells her story to a priest.

Luis Vargas …(Antonio Banderas), a wealthy Cuban businessman who seeks out an American wife, believes Americans represent the future, and that his own countrymen – and women – are mired in the past and their traditions. After months of corresponding with Julia Russell (Angelina Jolie), the day comes when she sails to his country to be his bride. Julia departs from the ship, looking nothing like the photos she’s sent prior to her voyage. Julia explains she wants more than a man who is interested in a pretty face, and that’s why she’s been deceptive – substituting a plain-looking woman in place of her own picture. Luis also admits to deception; he’s been misleading her into believing he’s a poor workingman, instead of the rich owner of a coffee company.

Luis and Julia wed within hours of her setting foot in Cuba. Passion and lust lie just below the surface as the two begin to discover each other over the next few days. Luis falls passionately in love with his new bride, while Julia seems to be fighting inner demons while holding herself back from too deep an emotional involvement.

Meanwhile, Julia’s sister Emily has been trying to contact her sister, justifiably worried about her after such a long trip to a strange land. Luis forces Julia to write back, fearing that if Julia continues to ignore Emily’s letters, Emily will assume something terrible has befallen her sister and might send the authorities to check on her welfare. Holding off as long as possible, Julia finally pens a letter to her sister, setting into motion the execution of Julia’s hidden agenda.

In order to assure that his wife has everything she wants, Luis adds Julia to his business and personal bank accounts, giving her free rein to spend as she pleases. Luis discovers Julia has run off with nearly all of his fortune, and then teams up with a detective, Walter Downs (Thomas Jane). Walter reveals to Luis he believes Julia to be an impostor and the intended wife to be dead by her hand, and that she may be working with someone. The two set out together looking for the thief and possible murderer.

Luis finds Julia and discovers she is actually working with Walter and she tells him a story of the two Americans teaming up for the scam. He believes she loves him and lies to Walter, but when confronted by him a fight breaks out and Luis shoots Walter. Julia, hardly bothered by the events, tells Luis to leave and buy train tickets and while he is gone we discover Walter loaded the gun with blanks. Julia appears to love Luis but Walter has too much control over her so she continues to work for him as Luis and her run off to live in secret with the supposedly dead Walter on their tail.

The two find a reasonable house and Luis throws away his promising future and opens himself to a living a life like hers, one filled with cheating and deception. One night Luis follows Julia and discovers Walter is alive and the two are still working together and she is going to poison her husband that very night. He returns home and waits for her, and when she arrives reveals he knows of her continuing deception and the plan, confesses his love for her once more and swallows the poisoned drink. Julia panics, flees with the dying Luis with Walter close behind. The married couple run into him at a train station; Walter is furious that Julia has betrayed him. While Walter holds a knife to her throat, Luis shoots him knocking him down, and Julia takes the gun shooting him one more time, killing him. She staggers away with her dying husband leaning on her.

The past and present finally meet as we hear the conclusion of Julia’s story and she asks the priest to pray with her. The next morning the guards come to her cell to find the priest in her clothing.

In another city, a beautiful woman enters a room in which a game is taking place. As she walks around the table occupied by gamblers, she thanks the men for allowing her to watch. Luis is one of the men, and while Julia signals him about the other players’ cards, he begins to tell the other occupants about a story of a woman and his deep love for her.



Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: