[Luxus Magazine] Tom Ripley or the Dolce Vita… at any price

The archetypal unscrupulous ambitious man, obsessed with the lifestyle of the ultra-rich, Tom Ripley is back in action. This fictional anti-hero, created in 1955 by American novelist Patricia Highsmith and made into a screen play many times over, is now being offered for the first time as a series on Netflix, with Andrew Scott in the title role. Portrait of a talented character, between light and shadow, who, 70 years after his creation, still fascinates as much as he disturbs.

Penniless, living on petty theft but determined to get out of poverty, Tom Ripley begins his entry into the world of luxury and false pretenses with a mission that looks like an all-inclusive vacation: to bring the son of a wealthy shipbuilder back to sanity and into the New York fold. The prodigal son lives a bohemian life with his girlfriend under the Capri sun. But the neurotic genius is not about to give up his new “friends” and the good life so easily. The result is an immoderate taste for luxury, which only a few days earlier was beyond his reach.


Black sunshine

Don’t be fooled by his cheeky smile and dandy looks. Because if Tom Ripley has the art and the manner… it’s to swindle and manipulate, if not kill his wealthy peers in the hottest spots on the planet.


An anti-hero whose morbid escapades and identity theft punctuate no less than five novels written by Patricia Highsmith between 1955 and 1995, Tom Ripley owes much of his venomous notoriety to the cinema, and more specifically to two adaptations of the first volume, “The Talented Mr. Ripley”.


The first, “Plein Soleil”, directed in 1960 by René Clément, saw Alain Delon‘s Rastignac land by a stroke of fate in the middle of the jet set, under the golden sun of southern Italy.


Poster for Plein Soleil, film by René Clément, 1960 © Paris Films Production/Titanus


The French actor and sex symbol, who had not yet filmed “La piscine”, co-stars with Marie Laforêt and Maurice Ronet as Marge Sherwood and Dickie Greenleaf, a young couple from a good family in perfect love, duped by the falsely benevolent young Adonis.


The second, “The Talented Mr Ripley”, directed by Anthony Minghella and released in 1999, gave the lead role to Matt Damon, opposite a Hollywood cast including Jude Law, Gwyneth Paltrow, Philip Seymour Hoffman and Cate Blanchett.




The Talented Mr. Ripley by Anthony Minghella, 1999 © Miramax


In these two cult works of cinema, the sun shining on Tom Ripley’s golden sojourns in Sicily and Ischia contrasts sharply with the darkness of his heart, making it easy to forget that both films are psychological thrillers.

Click here to read the entire article on Luxus Magazine.

Featured Photo: © Press

Picture of Victor Gosselin
Victor Gosselin
Victor Gosselin is a journalist specializing in luxury, HR, tech, retail, and editorial consulting. A graduate of EIML Paris, he has been working in the luxury industry for 9 years. Fond of fashion, Asia, history, and long format, this ex-Welcome To The Jungle and Time To Disrupt likes to analyze the news from a sociological and cultural angle.

Our services

©2023 Luxus Plus. All rights reserved.

Subscribe to our Newsletter

Sign up now to receive sneak previews of our programs and articles!

Launch offer:

Your participation in the Camille Fournet Masterclass reserved for annual subscriber !

Luxus Plus Newsletter