Jude Law gives his opinion on Netflix’s ‘The Talented Mr Ripley’ adaptation
(Credits: Netflix)

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Jude Law gives his opinion on Netflix’s ‘The Talented Mr Ripley’ adaptation

In 1999, British actor Jude Law starred alongside Matt Damon in Anthony Minghella’s celebrated adaptation of Patricia Highsmith’s best-selling 1955 novel, The Talented Mr Ripley. The star, now 51, has reacted to the new Netflix adaptation. 

The new update on the classic tale is a series starring Andrew Scott as the titular Tom Ripley, which arrived on the platform on April 4th. So far, critics and streamers have generally praised the adaptation for Steven Zaillian’s compelling direction and striking monochrome design. 

Speaking to Entertainment Weekly in a recent interview, Jude Law noted the difference between Zaillian and Minghella’s visions as a positive. “I’m enjoying it,” he said. “How can one not? It’s such great material.”

“You’re in great hands with wonderful actors, and it’s such an interesting character,” Law added. He then noted how the two directors impressed their own vision on the story, avoiding banal territory. “Steve Zaillian’s [version], in many ways, couldn’t be further from Anthony’s,” he said. “It’s very interesting to see what scenes and threads still come to the surface, even if they are very different stylistically and in their pacing.”

Although remaining faithful to the book is always essential, when adaptations pile up, it is vital to keep the audience engaged with nuance. “Both versions reflect the director in many ways,” Law continued. “One is visual, colourful, and romantic. The other is quite forensic and more sinister. Film, to me, often reflects the person at the helm of the camera.”

Law revealed that, although he hasn’t watched Minghella’s 1999 adaptation in many years, the Netflix series brought the memories back in floods. “I kept thinking, ‘Oh God, I remember this,’” he said. “Down to the name of Dickie’s maid, Ermelinda. I always remember saying, ‘Ermelinda, Ermelinda.’ There was an emotional level, too, to revisiting those characters.”

In a 4.5-star review of Ripley, Best of Netflix’s Debiparna Chakraborty wrote: “Despite its black-and-white aesthetics and delicious debauchery, some viewers may find the pacing of Ripley to be slow, and those with intense streaks of thalassophobia may find certain scenes unsettling. However, these minor quibbles pale in comparison to the series’ overall brilliance. Ripley is a neo-noir masterpiece.”

Watch the trailer for Ripley below.