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86 Reviews
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34 of 35 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An American city girl in the English countryside - not good for one's stiff upper lip!
This adaptation of a Noel Coward play was great fun. It was full of great performances from an all-star cast, and some hilarious set pieces - involving a chihuahua and the can can, and a fabulous tango from Colin Firth, but I digress.

The roaring twenties are in full flow when John Whittaker has a whirlwind romance and brings his new American bride home to meet...
Published on 14 Jun 2009 by Annabel Gaskell

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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars "Francophile...pharmacist...floozy?"
The year is 1928, and young playboy John is bringing his new bride to his parent's country estate. His possessive mother (Kristin Scott Thomas) is fuming over the marriage and horrified to meet Larita (Jessica Biel), his outspoken, race car-driving, and slightly older wife. John's father (Colin Firth), an unhappy veteran of WWI, is the only one in the family who seems to...
Published on 4 Feb 2010 by Kona


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3 of 6 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Easy Virtue? Hilarious?, 8 April 2009
By 
This review is from: Easy Virtue [DVD] (DVD)
Billed as "Hilarious" this film disappoints, as fairly mindless entertainment, to while away an hour or so, it's okay and the period detail is good. The episode with the dog is a classic though!
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7 of 13 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Very disappointing., 25 Mar 2009
By 
Celtes (wales, uk) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
This review is from: Easy Virtue [DVD] (DVD)
I really expected to like this film... but I didn't.

It has some funny moments- Kris Marshall is a star!- and the costumes and settings were stunning. The music was great also. That's it for the good points though.

I really, really hated the main character played by Jessica Biel. I thought that she was portrayed as rude and selfish-- not independant and strong as I'm sure they were aiming for. It was a film where everything was black and white. You had the 'evil' stereotype of the English upper classes and the 'good' American girl who comes to shake things up a bit. Maybe if they had stuck to this formula a tad better the film would have worked. However, there are certain moments where we get to see that the 'evil' characters are not totally 2 dimensional and have some feelings. We begin to sympathise with them... but then the moment is up. This left me with a real sense of wanting more from the film. The end is wholly unsatisfying because we get these glimpses of sadness in the characters lives which left me really disliking the main characters' behaviour towards them.

I felt that this film was trying to mock the English upper class characters but left me actually sympathising with them (even as a Welsh girl!) I'm really disappointed.
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2 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Be very surprised..., 22 Mar 2009
This review is from: Easy Virtue [DVD] (DVD)
Upon release was dubious about watching this film as It just didnt look very good. Even the DVD cover will surely put some people of.

But this is surely one of those great small films that will find its home on DVD, the cast deliver a frightfully funny script and it has one of the greatest soundtracks I have heard in a while.

If you are looking for enjoyable saturday night viewing give it a go. You will not regret it.
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11 of 22 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Why did they make this?, 9 Jun 2009
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This review is from: Easy Virtue [DVD] (DVD)
I was expecting to really enjoy this film. I've never seen any of Coward's plays, but I enjoy other stuff from the '20s, like PG Wodehouse (especially the Fry and Laurie adaptions) and Evelyn Waugh's early books like Vile Bodies.

Anyway, the film didn't work at all for me. For a start, it's much too long for the rather thin story. Then the script seems heavy-handed, and shifts awkwardly between attempts at slapstick comedy and serious drama, neither of which really work. Jessica Biel doesn't seem happy in the lead role, and there's very little chemistry between her and her co-star. And most of the characters are not really believable or likeable.

I listened to the writer/director's commentary, because I was interested to find out how the film turned out so badly. He says he finds most films like this 'a little boring and staid'. So he changed virtually all of Coward's story and characters to bring it 'up to date' for a younger audience, and put in various daft gags that he'd 'always wanted to do'.

To me, that raises an obvious question - why did the producers want to base the film on Coward's play at all? Why not just develop a completely new script?

By the way, a really irritating point for anyone interested in classic cars is that Jessica Biel supposedly wins the 1928 Monaco Grand Prix in a BMW that didn't actually enter producion until 1936.

Good points? Well, Jessica Biel looks geat in most things, but particuarly in a hunting outfit. Kristin Scott Thomas and Kris Marshall (the butler) give good performances. And I really liked the jazz version of 'Car Wash'...
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4 of 9 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Awful fare from Firth, from whom we have come to enjoy greater & fairer things, 11 Jun 2011
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This review is from: Easy Virtue [DVD] (DVD)
Oh, woe! Woeful tosh.
"Brideshead Revisited" this is not ... neither is it "Remains Of The Day". Of course it was never meant to come close to either of those fine and elegant masterpieces but, if you like your 1920's/30's socio-historic dramas, even those with comic intent, so much that you buy all newcomers, hoping for brief reprises of greater films, this film may lead you to regret your purchase, as it did me. I found that even the relatively poor "Relative Values" film had more going for it than this awful, grouse-beater (cow-tipper). This film pretends to be of Bates' "Love For Lydia" England, of the 1920's, yet it introduces the American mid-west-born idea of creeping-up on sleeping cows and 'tipping' them, for 'laughs', and it purports that this idiocy was a regular pastime of decadent aristocratic flappers! This daft film is, at best, a cobbled-together mishmash of superficial and facile nonsense. As for the tango scene ... OMG: how awful. I think Colin Firth is an excellent actor; one of the finest. He looked so bored and uninterested in this role - I felt for him. I love watching Kristin Scott Thomas yet she was unbearable in this role - I was heart-sick for her; I cannot bear to mention the superficiality of the other players ...
though the inept choreography of the "Argentine Tango" scene (a style of tango that was never a part of 1920's high society), a beautiful dance that this film reduced to . . . something redolent of a bag of carrots falling from the back of a farm lorry. It was not only danced so badly, it was historically incorrect. In the 1920's, the tango that would have been danced, at least in fair society, in England, would not have been the fabulous salon or milonguero tango styles of Argentina's milongas of The Argentine Tango Golden Age (from the late 1930's, through the 1940's, into the 1950's), if anything, it would have either been a form of Orillero (improvised tangos from the towns and cities of the River Plate estuary) no matter how unlikely that would have been (in England in the 1920's); or a typically post-Parisian ballroom style tango. However that has nothing in common with the real thing, with Argentine Tango, of which we see an awful example, danced here, some 20 years before that exact and precise liso/salon style had even been born in Buenos Aires. Poor and badly executed; this film is a shadow from the world of shells, smelly ones at that; it's really qlipothic. It only it had been noumenal.
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7 of 16 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Forced, tiresome and unfunny, 18 Mar 2009
This review is from: Easy Virtue [DVD] (DVD)
This was a film that tried too hard to be hip, from its annoying retro-ised pop songs (including a jitterbug "Sex Bomb") to its use of cheap-looking digital effects that serve no useful function other than to goad a moribund film into some semblance of life.

The story is a fuss over nothing, which would be bearable if the performances provided enough distraction, but they don't. You get Kristin Scott Thomas appearing as a skeleton who looks like she's about to shatter, and Colin Darcy- sorry- Firth as one of his previous characters. Jessica Biel is beautiful, but I can't remember anything of her performance, so it can't have done much for me at the time.

There is some stuff that amuses, but on the whole it feels tired and desperate, using tricks borrowed from other films. You could pass away a bit of an afternoon watching it, but if crown green bowls was on BBC2, you'd get more thrills from that.
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3 of 8 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Disappointment, 23 July 2009
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This review is from: Easy Virtue [DVD] (DVD)
I dont buy many DVDs so when I do I expect a lot!I was a bit disappointed in this . It was funny in places but generally I didnt feel it lived up to it's hype.
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1 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars If there was a ten star rating this film should be awarded it, 25 May 2009
By 
foxcylady - See all my reviews
(TOP 1000 REVIEWER)    (VINE VOICE)   
This review is from: Easy Virtue [DVD] (DVD)
This film is what us brits do best a true down to earth farce with excellent acting witty retorts and eccentric story line. I laughed till I cried as did my other half. A must see for any Noel Coward fan this is truly a film not to be missed in 2009.
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0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Disappointing and smutty, 9 Oct 2013
By 
Jay B. (Cornwall, U.K.) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Easy Virtue [DVD] (DVD)
The cover of the DVD claims it's a PG but in reality it's a 12, which may mislead some buyers as it did me. I like my period dramas witty and and well made, something this struggles with on both accounts. It sort of tries to be as brilliantly entertaining as The Importance of Being Earnest, but doesn't quite work as its unsure of its tone and direction and so thus falls down flat.

As I say in the title of this review, it's also very smutty, with forced sex references and scenes which come off as feeling dirty as opposed to romantic or humorous. And while the script can be genuinely funny in parts it cannot make up for the train wreck that it ultimately feels like by the end of the show.
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0 of 3 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Comedy? This?, 18 Dec 2010
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This review is from: Easy Virtue [DVD] (DVD)
Me and my wife have just seen "Easy virtue". I promised her a comedy because it said so on the cover. "Doubling up with laughter" etc. Ok, now we have seen it. None of us were laughing at any single moment. This was more of a typical high society drama in the English upper classes. As such it was ok but somewhat predictable and boring. Kristin Scott Thomas was excellent and there were way to little of Colin Firth. It was worth watching and buying at sale price but just so. Don't run after this one.
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Easy Virtue [DVD]
Easy Virtue [DVD] by Stephan Elliott (DVD - 2009)
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