Austenland

"Weak"

Austenland Review


Fans of romantic fiction may enjoy this gimmicky comedy, which cleverly plays around with Jane Austen's fiction but kind of misses its own joke. The screenwriters seem to think they're combining sudsy fantasy with darker realism. But actually everything on screen is plainly ridiculous, only livened up by a couple of the actors.

The story starts in America, where Jane (Russell) is so obsessed with Austen's novels that she's sure Mr Darcy is coming for her any day now. So she spends her savings on a holiday at Austenland in England, where Mrs Wattlesbrook (Seymour) lets her clients live as if they're in a 19th century novel. Jane's only fellow guests are Elizabeth and Amelia (Coolidge and King), both of whom flirt shamelessly with Nobley, Andrews and East (Feild, Callis and Whittle), the actors on hand to play dashing bachelors. But Jane is more interested in sexy stable boy Martin (McKenzie).

As the script strains to layer romance and fantasy into this goofy set-up, there are a few snappy one-liners that get us laughing, thanks mainly to the expert improvisation skills of Coolidge, who can make anything funny. By contrast, Russell is annoyingly naive and sulky, while King tips the opposite way into broad farce. The men are more interesting because we occasionally get to see them as the actors they really are, but none of them are very complex, and we can guess where the story is going from the start.

The main problem is that everything is so superficial: these are all people who are trying to find love by pretending to be someone else, playing dressing up in frilly costumes. They even put on a painfully idiotic play at one point. But we never believe any of them is capable of actually falling in love with anyone other than themselves. So even if there's the odd deranged joke or witty super-nerd gag, the script misses the entire point of Austen's novels, which are about internal motivations and layered characters.



Austenland

Facts and Figures

Genre: Comedy

Run time: 97 mins

In Theaters: Friday 27th September 2013

Box Office USA: $2.2M

Budget: $4.9M

Distributed by: Sony Pictures Classics

Production compaines: Fickle Fish Films, Moxie Pictures

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 2 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 30%
Fresh: 31 Rotten: 73

IMDB: 6.2 / 10

Cast & Crew

Director:

Starring: as Jane Hayes, J. J. Feild as Mr. Henry Nobley, as Martin, as Miss Elizabeth Charming, as Colonel Andrews, as Lady Amelia Heartwright, as Mr. Wattlesbrook, as Captain East, as Mrs. Wattlesbrook, as Molly, Ruben Crow as Chad, Demetri Goritsas as Jimmy, Parker Sawyers as Alexander, Sarah Niles as Delilah, Annie Gould as Patience, Tracy Higgins as Prudence, Goldy Greaves as Constance, Bernadette Chapman as Portence, Julie Newman as Temperance, Alison Carpenter as Plain Maid, Brenda Storer as Plain Maid, Caroline Bond as Plain Maid, Hema Bedre as Plain Maid, Joanna Abbot as Plain Maid, Sandra Morgan as Plain Maid, Suzanne Downes as Plain Maid, Richard Reid as Nigel, Austin Wilks as Harry, Alan Calton as Barnaby, Tom Whitecross as Angus, Jadran Malkovich as Rupert, Gideon Jensen as Roger, Andrew Samuels as Hot Servant, Dino Georgiades as Hot Servant, Erica Elmer as Hot Servant, Fabian Bourgoin Heskia as Hot Servant, Gunalp Kocak as Hot Servant, Lee Craven as Hot Servant, Mazlum Kortas as Hot Servant, Ryan Bohan as Hot Servant, Samantha-Jane Hunt as Hot Servant, Yiannis Morgan as Hot Servant, Jonathan Whittaker as Sideburn Guy

Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

New Movies

The Edge of Seventeen Movie Review

The Edge of Seventeen Movie Review

An unusually realistic teen movie, this drama gets deep under the skin of its characters,...

Bleed for This Movie Review

Bleed for This Movie Review

This is such a ripping true story that it can't help but grab hold of...

Moana Movie Review

Moana Movie Review

In a clear echo of Frozen, this Disney animated adventure centres on a fiercely independent...

Bad Santa 2 Movie Review

Bad Santa 2 Movie Review

The 2003 comedy Bad Santa is a holiday classic that skilfully mixes gross-out humour with...

Allied Movie Review

Allied Movie Review

There's a terrific script at the heart of this World War II thriller, with a...

A United Kingdom Movie Review

A United Kingdom Movie Review

Based on a powerful true story from the late 1940s, this drama is packed with...

Indignation Movie Review

Indignation Movie Review

Philip Roth's layered novels are a challenge for filmmakers (see also 2003's The Human Stain...

Advertisement
Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them Movie Review

Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them Movie Review

It's been five years since the last Harry Potter movie, and J.K. Rowling has been...

Dog Eat Dog Movie Review

Dog Eat Dog Movie Review

Yet another bonkers thriller starring Nicolas Cage, this trashy crime comedy comes from director Paul...

Iggy Pop - Post Pop Depression: Live At The Royal Albert Hall Movie Review

Iggy Pop - Post Pop Depression: Live At The Royal Albert Hall Movie Review

"Iggy Pop - Post Pop Depression: Live At The Royal Albert Hall" is a DVD...

Arrival Movie Review

Arrival Movie Review

This sci-fi drama has an enjoyably brain-bending plot that leaves the audience almost stunned with...

Elle Movie Review

Elle Movie Review

There's a boldly comical tone to this outrageous thriller that can't help but unnerve audiences...

100 Streets Movie Review

100 Streets Movie Review

A multi-strand drama set in London, this film is very nicely shot and acted, but...

Nocturnal Animals Movie Review

Nocturnal Animals Movie Review

It's been seven years since designer Tom Ford made a splash with his award-winning writing-directing...

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.