Wuthering Eighty-Eights

As romantic as a Bronte tale, Jane Campion's The Piano arrives laden with prizes -- and bursting with mute and musical passion

This movie can't be that good -- it's won too many prizes. The Piano has been saddled with a Cannes Palme d'Or and 11 Australian Film Institute awards. For New Zealand writer-director Jane Campion, the film marks a triumph of dazzling movie art and canny show-biz heart. It's that good.

The Piano is Campion's coming of age -- a delivery on the promise of her first two features. Sweetie (1989), about the devastating effect a disturbed young woman has on her family, was bitter medicine; the movie double-dared its audience to find sympathy in its dour or manic characters. In An...

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