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German title Chromophobia
Original title Chromophobia
Country of production United Kingdom , France , United States
original language English
Publishing year 2005
length 136 minutes
Director Martha Fiennes
script Martha Fiennes
production Tarak Ben Ammar ,
Ron Rotholz
music Magnus Fiennes
camera George Tiffin
cut Tracy Granger

Chromophobia is a British - French - American drama film released in 2005 . Martha Fiennes directed and wrote the script. The main and supporting roles are cast with Ben Chaplin , Penélope Cruz , Ralph Fiennes , Ian Holm , Rhys Ifans , Damian Lewis , Kristin Scott Thomas and Harriet Walter .


Art dealer Iona Aylesbury is married to finance lawyer, Marcus Aylesbury. The couple have an eight-year-old son, Orlando, and are upper class. When Marcus one day is promoted to partner in the firm, he is even less at home. Hardly anyone knows that he prefers to download music and play the drums in his office. He would much rather have become a musician and mourn the times with his old band. Iona struggles with the constant absence of her husband, who prefers to be out and about than to deal with private matters. The thought of breaking out of her golden cage occurs more and more often. In addition to sessions with her therapist, she tries to cover up her inner emptiness with excessive shopping trips and cosmetic surgery. She is not a good mother to her son, the child lacks parental attention and affection, which is noticeable in Orlando's behavior.

But Iona isn't the only one struggling with problems; Marcus' principled father Edward, a retired judge, feels the same way. Edward's wife, Harriet, gives her love and attention especially to her dogs and her garden. And then there is Stephen Tulloch, museum curator and art lover and godfather of Orlando, who is noticeably often in the vicinity of adolescent boys. When he visits the museum, he takes a drawing by Rembrandt with him. The cancer-stricken prostitute Gloria, who has to look after a little daughter, has to struggle with completely different problems, and the very committed social worker Colin is of great help to her.

In turn, Trent, a friend of Marcus Aylesbury's, is put under pressure by his boss to give him a new story. Trent knows that Aylesbury made some illegal financial transactions, which the friend talked to him about, trusting his loyalty. When Marcus stumbles upon a secret of his father during his work and also confides this to Trent, doom takes its course. Under pressure from his employer, Trent reveals both the financial transactions and the carefully kept secret that the prostitute's daughter Gloria is the child of ex-judge Edward Aylesbury in his Aylesburys reveal story.


Production notes

Produced by the Isle of Man Film Commission, Rotholz Pictures and Quinta Communications, the film was shot between July and October 10, 2004 in London , at Skywood House in Denham, Buckinghamshire and on the Isle of Man . Its production amounted to an estimated 10 million US dollars .

You could almost call the film a family production. Martha Fiennes wrote the script and directed it. Her brother Magnus provided the music and her brother Ralph plays a leading role in the film. The film title refers to a video art exhibition that caught Iona Aylesbury's interest and in which every character has a kind of phobia about relationships, jobs, wealth, children, crime and being human in general, fears that severely limit the joy of living.

Music in the film


The world premiere of Chromophobia took place on May 21, 2005 during the Cannes International Film Festival . The film was released in Italy in March 2006, in France on May 10, 2006 and in Israel in mid-December 2006. In Spain it was shown in May 2007, in the UK it was presented at the Cambridge Film Festival on July 12, 2007 , before it hit UK theaters on December 14, 2007. It was also published in Bulgaria, Greece, Hungary, Lithuania, Portugal, Russia and Serbia. The film was not released in Germany. There is also no German synchronized version.


The film fell through the majority of the critics, which affected its presentation in the cinema.
Derek Elley praised the cast in Variety magazine on May 25, 2005. Most actors - with the exception of Kristin Scott Thomas - are forced to adapt to the lack of a comedic or dramatic rhythm in the film ("most of the cast are leveled by the script and the pic's lack of comedic or dramatic rhythm"). The film begins like a “wannabe comedy” and later expects the audience to sympathize with the self-absorbed, neurotic characters. The use of Beethoven's 9th Symphony at the end seems like an act of artistic desperation.

On the English website Eye for Film , the criticism was mixed. The balance between rich and poor is pretty top-heavy, only Penélope Cruz as a prostitute with cancer, her daughter and Rhys Ifans' as a crazy social worker represent the lower class. With every character conspicuously approaching an impending doom - a more Shakespearean approach - Chromophobia emphasizes the generally depressing tone. In the end, all of this is far too unrealistic. London just isn't so ruthless. Ifans and Cruz were praised for their portrayal, Holms excelled in his role, Damian Lewis and Kristin Scott Thomas, however, were too cautious in their play. Ralph Fiennes is frustratingly ambiguous, a problem that his sister also has with her film. It is commendable that the film seriously deals with the problems of our time.

On the English page Shadows on the Wall it is said that the film drama was fascinatingly well filmed and finely performed by a good cast. The evocative British drama digs itself into modern life in interesting ways, even if it is not always easy to see the meaning of it all. Each actor plays his role perfectly, especially the central duo Lewis and Scott Thomas. Cruz plays essentially the same skinny whore she played in Don't Move in 2004 , but is much more believable here. Holms has been lauded for portraying Marcus as Marcus' terrible bourgeois father and Walter as his stepmother.

At View , Matthew Turner wrote that the main problem with the film was that the viewer could not sympathize with any of the characters, with the character of Iona in particular being terrible for most of the film. The plot is also actually indissoluble. Despite the good work and a fine ensemble, the plot never really gets going and doesn't manage to move on a meaningful level. Disappointing.

Erik Woidtke from the English side Cinemablend was torn in his assessment, but came to the conclusion that even an outstanding ensemble of Great Britain's best actors could not rise above an invented script, the episodic drama that is incredibly overrated on Paul Haggis Remember the 2004 LA crash . The best scenes in the film are the early ones, which come along with sharp wit and satirical influences, elements that are rare in the dull and disappointing second half. Chromophobia was an interesting failure, mainly because of some good performances by its actors, who, despite the flaws in the script, had some leeway.

Cath Clarke wrote in the Guardian that the film presented some sharp observations, but Fiennes sheared off with her script with a sappy subplot about a prostitute and a social worker from the mapped out world, which means that the film is no better and no worse than two hours a fancy soap opera.

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. Chromophobia filming locations in the IMDb. Retrieved November 16, 2007.
  2. Chromophobia Box office in the IMDb. Retrieved November 16, 2007.
  3. a b Chromophobia see (English). Retrieved March 3, 2019.
  4. Chromophobia premiere dates in the IMDb. Retrieved November 16, 2007.
  5. Derek Elley: Chromophobia  ( page no longer available , search in web archivesInfo: The link was automatically marked as defective. Please check the link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. Film review at (English). Retrieved November 16, 2007.@1@ 2Template: Dead Link /  
  6. Chromophobia see eyeforfilm (English). Retrieved March 3, 2019.
  7. ^ Matthew Turner: Chromophobia see (English). Retrieved March 3, 2019.
  8. Erik Woidtke: Chromophobia see (English). Retrieved March 3, 2019.
  9. Cath Clarke: Chromophobia In: The Guardian . December 14, 2007 (English). Retrieved March 3, 2019.