Director: Martin Scorsese

138 mins, USA, 1993, 4K Digital

Edith Wharton’s novels of the Gilded Age placed their characters against a backdrop of almost oppressive propriety where errors in decorum could prove ruinous. Despite a substantial body of work, her work has had relatively few screen adaptations, with perhaps the best-known being Terence Davies’s The House of Mirth (2000), and Martin Scorsese’s appropriately meticulous The Age Of Innocence, for which Wharton became the first woman to win a Pulitzer Prize. Newly restored in 4K digital to mark the occasion of its thirtieth anniversary, the film focuses on gentleman Newland Archer (Daniel Day-Lewis), whose social standing and engagement to the respectable May Welland (Winona Ryder) are threatened by the arrival of the Countess Olenska (Michelle Pfeiffer), whose lifestyle and views, though controversial and unconventional, cause Newland to question his own desires in the airless world in which he moves. 

Notes by Kevin Coyne

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