“Rebecca” is a classic romance story of a tall, broad-shouldered and privileged man in a bright yellow coloured suit, who charms a young, naïve ordinary woman.
Maxim de Winters (Armie Hammer), inheritor of the Manderley estate, meets the companion to Mrs. Van Hopper (Ann Dowd), a rich American woman on holiday in Monte Carlo. The whirlwind romance between the Englishman and the young woman progresses rather quickly into marriage. The swiftness with which the romance progresses will make you suspicious, and rightly so. Lily James – the sweetheart of Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again – plays the woman, who for unknown reasons is not given a name by the screenwriters Jane Goldman, Joe Shrapnel and Anna Waterhouse until she becomes Mrs De Winters.
When the couple arrives at Manderley, Mrs De Winters realises that she’s not prepared at all for life as the lady of the house. She knows nothing about fine dining menus or planning balls and the housekeeper Mrs Danvers (Kristin Scott Thomas) as well as the staff make it perfectly clear that she is not welcome. What’s more shocking is that Maxim does not rescue his wife from the clutches of the staff who look down on her and utterly disrespect her. Instead, he becomes an entirely different man. Whilst always a man of few words, at the mansion Maxim, is a troubled sleepwalker.
The costumes and scenery make this film a real beauty. You can hardly go wrong with the French Riviera; can you? However, what is really interesting about the film “Rebecca” is that a series of plot twists turn the story on its head. In the end, unlike most fairytales where the prince charming rescues the girl, it is Mrs De Winters who rescues her man. And it is the same grit with she won him in the first place that she fights for her marriage.
“Rebecca” is based on a 1938 novel of the same title and it is streaming on Netflix.