WCW: Jacqueline Bisset

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Jacqueline Bisset’s career has spanned over 50 years and for the most has been pretty enjoyable. I very rarely don’t enjoy a film she’s in, and she’s been in quite a few good frock flicks to boot. So, today we’re going to look back over that career and highlight the good, the bad, and the meh. Sometimes it’s a mixed bag!

 

 

The Life and Times of Judge Roy Bean (1972)

Directed by John Huston and starring Paul Newman, Jacqueline Bisset plays Newman’s daughter, Rose.

 

Murder on the Orient Express (1974)

Jacqueline Bisset plays the reclusive Countess Helena Andrenyi in the 1974 adaptation of Agatha Christie’s novel.

 

Inchon (1985)

The film centers on the Battle of Inchon, considered the turning point of the Korean War. Jacqueline Bisset plays Barbara Hallsworth, the wife of a U.S. Army Major, who saves five Korean children as she flees the encroaching battle. The costumes don’t look particularly 1950s, but that was the least of the film’s problems. It has gone on to be cited as one of the worst films ever made.

 

Under the Volcano (1984)

Another film where you’re not really going to be able to tell if it was set in the 1980s or some vague point between 1930 and 1960 (hint: it’s set just before the outbreak of World War II). A film about a tortured couple torturing one another until they both die. Yay.

 

Forbidden (1984)

Jacqueline Bisset plays a German countess on the eve of World War II who falls in love with a Jewish man. Surprisingly, the film has something of a happy ending.

 

Anna Karenina (1985)

Christopher Reeve is a tasty snack as Vronsky, but the costumes are more tragic than the plot.

 

Napoleon and Josephine: A Love Story (1987)

There are some spectacular costumes in this film, but there are also some really weird choices as well. That said, Armand Assante looks fantastic as Napoleon, and Bisset is gorgeous no matter what she is wearing.

 

Rossini! Rossini! (1988)

I scoured the internet to find photos of Jacqueline Bisset in this movie, but came up empty handed. The film is set in 1868 and sounds like it would actually be interesting, so if you’ve seen it, tell us about it in the comments!

 

End of Summer (1997)

A wealthy single woman (see: spinster) who gets a second shot at love. The costumes don’t look terrible.

 

Dangerous Beauty (1998)

One of the highlights of this film is Jacqueline Bisset’s turn as Paola, Veronica Franco’s mother who is a retired courtesan and seeks to turn her daughter out into society now that she’s of age. Who can forget the banana?

 

Joan of Arc (1999)

Ah, yes. The classic peasant hoodie. Nothing really exciting to talk about as Bisset plays Joan’s mother, Isabelle.

 

Jesus (1999)

Jacqueline Bisset plays Mary, mother of Jesus. It’s a CBS made-for-TV-movie so you know the drill: All-white cast, smarmy plot, nothing shocking or otherwise controversial about it. Regardless, Bisset is gorgeous, so … it is what it is.

 

Britannic (2000)

A film about the HMHS Britannic in 1916, a few years after her sister ship, HMS Titanic, when it was sunk by an Imperial German naval mine while sailing near the Greek island of Kea.

 

In the Beginning (2000)

Another star-studded biblical epic miniseries. Jacqueline Bisset plays Sarah, wife of Abraham.

 

Swing (2003)

You’re not supposed to be sure if the film is actually set in some alternate reality of the 1940s in certain parts, or if it’s some kind of hallucination on the part of the lead actor. But either way, I’m including it because Jacqueline Bisset is gorgeous as the possible apparition who captivates a much younger man.

 

The Fine Art of Love (2005)

I don’t know what it is about films set in all-girls schools at the turn-of-the-century, but they make me seriously uncomfortable. Maybe it’s because they usually turn out to be about either someone underage getting murdered, someone underage getting raped and impregnated, or have weirdly male gaze-y homoerotic undertones that make you wonder what the writer and director are really interested in. Needless to say, this film basically checks all those boxes. I’m going to skip this one, but the costumes do look really good.

 

An Old Fashioned Thanksgiving (2008)

Based on a short story by Louisa May Alcott, it’s all Hallmark-y goodness with mediocre costumes.

 

An Old Fashioned Christmas (2010)

The costumes look better in this one than in Thanksgiving, I’ll give them that.

 

Peter and John (2015)

Set in 1872, it’s a story about some brothers going through some interpersonal drama that threatens to break the entire family apart. The costumes are distinctly meh.

 

 

What’s your favorite Jacqueline Bisset role? Tell us in the comments!

8 Responses

  1. Gregg Nystrom

    Love JB! I drew paper dolls of 6 cast members from “Murder on the Orient Express”, which were given to attendees at the 2019 paper doll convention. Of course, her ice blue gown was included…

  2. Jenny

    Hi, She was briefly in Two for the Road, as the woman who tempts Albert Finney just before she comes down with the measles.
    I love this site.

  3. TJ

    Just a quick recommendation, if you want some serious 1910s hat prn (and generally well done late 1910s costumes) an eastern European movie called called “Queen Marie” was just added to prime, the story is also pretty interesting, but that’s not what you’ll watch it for tbh. (Also I’m a patreon supporter *wink wink nudge nudge)

  4. Jose

    For A Moment i was on panic, i was thinking the Anna Karenina curse had striked again, we already lost 2 Annas this year Nicola Paggett (1977) and Helen McCrory (2000) i would hate to lose yet another one
    2 observations: I hate to be the one that points it out but, a 1985 flick before 1984?
    And apparently as weird as it can sound Peter and John was relaunched this year under the title Blood Brothers, the story is based on a Guy de Maupassant’s story Pierre et Jean, my favorite adaptation being a 1943 film but i mybe give this newer one a shot just for Jacqueline

    • Carrie

      I wouldn’t assume anything. These movies/ miniseries get made every year, often with a decent budget, and are pretty much guaranteed an audience. Maybe she just enjoys working, and there aren’t a huge variety of roles available for women over age 40 to choose from.

  5. SarahV

    I remember being utterly enthralled by that Napoleon and Josephine miniseries, and how utterly glamorous and regal she was. Armand Assante also gets a definitive ‘would do’ in that too.

  6. Damnitz

    Jacqueline Bisset is a great actress although today not so much famous as she deserves it. She looks very well for me in her role as Josephine as she is just the actress we like to see in a very intillegent and assertive character.