Bride of the Wind | Chicago Reader

Bride of the Wind

Alma Mahler is flirting again. Cut to reaction shot number one: the strained face of architect Walter Gropius, looking on as the woman he loves cozies up to someone new. Then director Bruce Beresford—not intending to be funny but succeeding wildly—cuts to reaction shot number two: a bust of her late husband, Gustav, as if it might commiserate. Femme fatale Alma is quite the feminist martyr in the hands of Beresford and screenwriter Marilyn Levy. She succumbs to social pressure and marries the renowned Mahler despite his refusal to support her ambition as a composer, but she flouts convention with her many lovers. Removing her necklace during an intimate scene with Oskar Kokoschka, she slips it over his head—a shocking demonstration of gender equality in early 20th-century Vienna. With Sarah Wynter, Jonathan Pryce, Vincent Perez, and Simon Verhoeven. 99 min.

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