Empire (UK) - - ON SCREEN -


DI­REC­TOR Au­tumn de Wilde CAST Anya Taylor-joy, Johnny Flynn, Bill Nighy, Mia Goth, Josh O’connor

Pop promo di­rec­tor Au­tumn de Wilde’s take on Jane Austen’s mis­chievous match­maker never re­ally finds its feet. Tonally all over the place (of­ten dur­ing the same scene), Anya Taylor-joy never truly cap­tures the char­ac­ter’s capri­cious na­ture as she guides the love life of friend Har­riet Smith (Goth) while spar­ring with neigh­bour Ge­orge Knight­ley (Flynn, in­tense). The first half wants to be light but the static stag­ing — it shoots for a Wes An­der­son-y styl­ized aes­thetic — and per­for­mances lack the verve and spirit to pull it off. The film fares bet­ter when it moves into more emo­tional ter­ri­tory, but never to­tally takes flight. Amy Heck­er­ling’s Clue­less — Emma in the Val­ley — re­mains the big-screen bench­mark.

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