John Kerr's nonfiction book A Most Dangerous Method
details the scintillating but ultimately fractious professional friendship between Carl Jung and Sigmund Freud, as well as the torrid affair between Jung and one of his patients that threatened to destroy the burgeoning psychoanalytic movement. For a filmmaker as curious about the mechanisms of the mind as David Cronenberg (Naked Lunch
, A History of Violence
), this might seem like ideal material, but the result (2011) tends to separate into drily cerebral scenes involving Freud (Viggo Mortensen) and Jung (Michael Fassbender) and, to a much lesser extent, powerfully primal interludes between Jung and his sadomasochistic charge, Sabina Spielrein (Keira Knightley). Kerr's dense history of academic politics at the turn of the 20th century has largely been dropped, but that isn't the problem: this is a movie with too much talk and not enough sensation. With Vincent Cassel.
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David Cronenberg's A Dangerous Method exposes the woman who came between Freud and Jung