The Happy Prince
ANDY’S RATING: In cinemas on Friday
“I HAVE nothing to declare but my genius,” Oscar Wilde allegedly quipped while waltzing through New York Customs.
If this is one of the reasons you have the famous wit on your list of dream dinner party guests, you should love Rupert Everett’s passion project about Wilde’s final years.
If, however, you think the cocky sod should stop showing off and hand over his duty free, you might find it a bit of slog.
Everett frames his drama with Wilde’s story of The Happy Prince, which he tells in flashback to his own children in London and to the young brother of a rent boy in Paris.
We also get a meaty section with Wilde falling out with his smarmy lover Bosie (Colin Morgan) as they blow his allowance on booze and yet more rent boys in Naples.
Whatever you think of Wilde, there should be no arguments about Everett’s performance. If he hadn’t wasted his best years farting about with Madonna he would now be recognised as one of this nation’s finest living actors.
Sadly, I’m less convinced by his talents as a writer and director. His performance kept me watching but a smarter script would have given me a reason to care.