Bedrooms and Hallways. Gardens and Castles. Love and Revenge. Acknowledged suitors, unacknowledged suitors, anatomy, deceit, surrender, jealousy, distraction and sex are timeless threads through this Oscar winner.
For her own absorbed amusement wealthy widow Marquise de Merteuil (the magnificent Glenn Close) uses her natural predatory instincts challenging notorious womaniser Vicomte de Valmont (John Malkovich) to seduce naive young newlywed Madame de Tourvel (Michelle Pfeiffer) while also set a task of performing erotic education with a teenage daughter of a former fling Cecile de Volanges (Uma Thurman) before the tender innocent is married off.
Cecile considers more than just piano lessons from from her music teacher Chevalier Danceny (Keanu Reeves) they writer letters of love until Valmont steps in under his own terms, for now.
Merteuil offers sexual rewards to Valmont for inspiration, both have a history together and glimpses of actual solid attachment.
Just when you think the comedy romance aspects set in, high stakes drama unfolds turning this immaculately photographed, designed and acted period classic inside out.
Decadence seeps through true love and loss, hardly balanced but taken to extremes with nothing good for anyone involved culminating in a raw final stanza that conforms full circle treachery has no part in true love.