Movie Review: The Importance of Being Earnest starring Rupert Everett, Colin Firth, Reese Witherspoon, and Frances O’Connor

by Keira on January 30, 2010 · 0 comments

in 3 Stars, Comedy of Manners, Gentry, Great Britain, Mistaken Identity, Movie Reviews, Victorian

The movie is Victorian with over the top contemporary additions. It is clear that Oliver Parker, the writer and director, attempted to dress up Oscar Wilde’s play to make it appeal to younger audiences who watch romantic-comedies.

But the play simply didn’t need it with the casting involved. So the movie winds up being a near-miss due to the additional distractions instead of being a favorite to be rewatched as incessantly as one watches Pride and Prejudice.

Two major problems for me include Gwendolyn getting as ass tattoo then wearing a thong and Lady Bracknell’s scandalous past flashback which makes her a hypocritical ninny.

One can’t forget when Colin Firth and Rupert Everett serenade a love song to the girls either. I can’t decide if I love it or think it’s too cheesy.

Beautiful sets and costumes.

One of the few changes I liked wholeheartedly was the addition of paying an outstanding bill. It added to the confusion of who is Earnest and was pretty funny to watch as Jack Worthing (Firth) and Algernon McNiff (Everett) exchanged slings.

The star studded cast does a fantastic job despite the goofiness in which Parker thrusts upon them. If you’re like me you will watch it for Colin Firth and enjoy the film. Reese Witherspoon (Cecily Cardew) and Frances O’Connor (Gwendolen Fairfax) are frosting on the cake. They are truly delightful to watch.

The Importance of Being Earnest is a fun romp but I expect a better version to be made at a future date.

Rating: 3 Stars

Buy: The Importance of Being Earnest

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