Cold Mountain is a pretty decent film. At first I thought that the entire premise was a bit weird because the main characters, Ada (Nicole Kidman) and Inman (Jude Law) barely kiss before he goes off to fight for the Confederate Army, but despite this fact, they are completely obsessed with each other and the film follows his vehement struggles to return to her. After giving it some more thought, however, I decided that this is not a weird idea at all. I can understand how when a person is absent, our idealization of them slowly forms them into an entirely different person than who they actually are. When they are absent, they become perfect; everything that we need; "if only they would return my life would be ok; I need them to successfully go on with my life." But when they do return the reality sets in that they are not in fact who we were imagining them to be, and we probably didn't really "need" what we think we did after all. This line of thought is a major theme of Cold Mountain.
Nicole Kidman thought she needed a sexy man to take care of her and Jude Law thought he needed a skinny blond to think about having sex with while away from home. And in the end, Kidman found she could take care of herself despite the fact that Tom left her and Law found out that when your woman's not around, the nanny can be used in a pinch.
Wait, that was real life.
Back to the film.
As many character flaws as Jude Law displays in real life, he seems to be a pretty capable actor. Previous to Cold Mountain, I only remember seeing him in Spielberg's A.I., where he plays a robotic male prostitute, and I didn't get a true sense of his acting abilities there because of the typecasting factor. In this film he plays an American Confederate soldier who stays faithful to a woman for FIVE YEARS that he's only kissed once...so, definitely a challenging role for him. He pulls it off. His southern accent is also spot on and I bought it all. The same goes for Kidman's performance.