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Coleman Silk, Anthony Hopkins, is a respected classics professor at a New England university. In the summer of 1998, while the whole world is bemused by the antics of Monica Lewinsky and President Clinton, Silk is forced to resign his position because a throwaway comment he made is taken, by a politically correct Establishment, to be a racist slur. The shock brings about the death of his wife. A few months later, the lonely and frustrated academic is seduced by Faunia Farely, Nicole Kidman, a woman his lawyer describes as not in his league and not of his world; she's also half his age. The steamy, Viagra-enhanced, relationship between Coleman and Faunia, who lives in fear of her abusive ex-husband, Ed Harris, is only one component of Philip Roth's highly-regarded novel. There's a twist in the tale, one that's revealed halfway through the film, and it turns everything upside down - and, crucially, it calls into question the casting of Anthony Hopkins who is excellent as Coleman but who is barely credible in the part given what is eventually revealed in flashbacks. Nicole Kidman gives another powerful performance as the bawdy Faunia, but she isn't the only Aussie in the cast: Jacinda Barrett gives a striking performance as Coleman's first love. Lending strong support is Gary Sinise, as Coleman's friend, who tells the story with a voice-over narration. Robert Benton's film, adapted by Nicholas Meyer, treads a thin line between drama and melodrama, but The Human Stain is, if nothing else, highly intriguing.