The Young Victoria 

film_review2-1.jpg

It's not unusual for performances to outshine the films they're in. We've seen it this year with Sandra Bullock in The Blind Side, with Mo'Nique in Precious, and with Amy Adams and Emily Blunt in Sunshine Cleaning. Well, Blunt's at it again with The Young Victoria, probably the most pronounced example.

This biopic of Britain's Queen Victoria in the days leading up to and immediately following her coronation is part of a recent trend of "before they were famous" features — Becoming Jane, Coco Before Chanel, etc. I guess the granddaddy of the form is John Ford's Young Mr. Lincoln.

Here Blunt charms as a would-be-normal young woman slowly coming to terms with her appointed place and then slowly getting comfortable with grasping and applying her hereditary power. The script from Julian Fellowes (Gosford Park) is interesting in making the triangle at the center — Victoria weighing the conflicting attentions of political adviser Lord Melbourne (Paul Bettany) and first suitor, then husband Albert (Rupert Friend) — less about romance or even royal intrigue than about a young woman's growing self-assertion. It's sort of a modern post-feminist parable in period garb.

Blunt's warmth and intelligence wins the audience over, but the problem is the plodding and unimaginative direction of Jean-Marc Vallée, which results in a dutiful, undistinguished period piece built around a good premise and an engaging lead performance.

Keep the Flyer Free!

Always independent, always free (never a paywall),
the Memphis Flyer is your source for the best in local news and information.

Now we want to expand and enhance our work.
That's why we're asking you to join us as a Frequent Flyer member.

You'll get membership perks (find out more about those here) and help us continue to deliver the independent journalism you've come to expect.


Favorite

Tags:

The Young Victoria
Rated PG · 104 min. · 2009
Official Site: www.theyoungvictoriamovie.com
Director: Jean-Marc Vallée
Writer: Julian Fellowes
Producer: Sarah Ferguson, Graham King, Martin Scorsese and Tim Headington
Cast: Emily Blunt, Rupert Friend, Paul Bettany, Miranda Richardson, Jim Broadbent, Mark Strong, Thomas Kretschmann, Jesper Christensen and Harriet Walter

Now Playing

The Young Victoria is not showing in any theaters in the area.

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT

Blogs

Hungry Memphis

Pete & Sam's returns!

We Saw You

When it rains, keep pouring the BBQ sauce

Politics Beat Blog

Keeping Score in Strickland's Tent at the Barbecue Fest

Music Blog

Quintron Brings Weather Warlock to Bar DKDC

Intermission Impossible

Love! Valour! Compassion!— Remembering Memphis actor David Foster

Intermission Impossible

Drama Club: Reviews of Othello, Annapurna, and Fun Home

ADVERTISEMENT

More by Chris Herrington

  • Last Words

    In "Enough Said," James Gandolfini makes his last lead film role his best.
    • Sep 26, 2013
  • Masters of Sound

    New albums from two of Memphis’ most distinctive stylists.
    • Sep 19, 2013
  • Hayes Carll at the Hi-Tone

    • Sep 19, 2013
  • More »

Readers also liked…

ADVERTISEMENT
© 1996-2018

Contemporary Media
460 Tennessee Street, 2nd Floor | Memphis, TN 38103
Visit our other sites: Memphis Magazine | Memphis Parent | Inside Memphis Business
Powered by Foundation