I am not going to even try to offer any intellectual input on this film.
This is for two reasons—it’s a Thomas Hardy novel and I’m not going to infer anything from a Thomas Hardy novel based off of a movie interpretation that can only capture so much of the original text. To offer any sort of perspective at such a preliminary level of understanding would be an insult to the hundreds of years scholars have studied it.*
The one thing I can talk about on a relatively expert level, though, is Mr. Oak’s layers.
There is a crucial scene in which Mr. Oak and Mr. Boldwood are conversing in Mr. Boldwood’s mansion. As important as their dialogue was, I was absolutely fixated on the effortless appeal Mr. Oak turtleneck, pullover, cardigan and jacket—the colors, the fabrics and the textures of knits should have been enough to swoon Bathsheba Everdene from the opening scene.
I thought I was alone in noticing Mr. Oak’s layers, but a review from Pop Babble perfectly captures the effect of the layers on a fashion-conscious viewer:
Stoic farmer Oak (played by Matthias Schoenaerts) is obviously #1, mainly for the fact that this dude knows how to layer, in this scene alone there are approx 4 layers going on.
*If you insist on learning something a bit more substantial about the film adaptation, this article from The Guardian should suffice.