Easy Virtue

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The ViewAuckland Review

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Review byMatthew Turner28/10/2008

Three out of Five stars
Running time: 93 mins

Enjoyable British comedy with a witty script, an amusingly quirky soundtrack and a terrific central performance from Jessica Biel.

What's it all about?
Set in the late 1920s and based on a play by Noel Coward (which was previously filmed by Alfred Hitchcock), Easy Virtue stars Jessica Biel as American racecar driver Larita, who marries young British aristocrat John Whittaker (Ben Barnes) after a whirlwind romance in France. When John takes her to his stately home to meet his family, his mother, Veronica (Kristin Scott-Thomas) is horrified, while his father (Colin Firth) sees Larita as a kindred spirit in the way that she's willing to ruffle a few stiff-upper-lipped tail feathers.

When Larita realises that Veronica is trying to undermine her, she determines to fight back and a battle of wits ensues. Meanwhile, Larita's presence in the house also has an amusing effect on John's sisters Hilda and Marion (Kimberley Nixon and Katherine Parkinson), particularly during Hilda's rendition of the Can-Can at a village talent show.

The Good
Jessica Biel delivers her best performance to date as the sexy, quick-witted Larita and she looks sensational in the 1920s costumes. Kristin Scott-Thomas is perfectly cast as Veronica and there's strong support from rising star Ben Barnes, while Kris Marshall gets several good laughs as their sardonic family butler, Furber.

Firth and Parkinson (from The IT Crowd) are equally good, while fresh-faced Kimberley Nixon proves she could be a real star with a delightful turn as the impressionable Hilda.

The Great
As you'd expect from Coward, the script crackles with great dialogue, while director Stephan Elliot orchestrates some superb scenes (the fox hunt is a definite highlight) and gives the production a modern feel that works surprisingly well. This is heightened by a superb soundtrack that includes period songs and quirky swing versions of newer songs like Car Wash, Sex Bomb and When The Going Gets Tough.

Worth seeing?
In short, Easy Virtue is an enjoyably witty British comedy with several good laughs and strong comic performances from a superb cast.

Film Trailer

Easy Virtue
Easy Virtue has been reviewed by 1 users
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Content updated: 20/01/2020 21:38

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