Easy Virtue is the story of young Englishman John Whittaker (Ben Barnes), who in a whirlwind of sorts marries eccentric American race car driver Larita (Jessica Biel). When young John brings Larita home to meet the family, her broodish American ways are too much for most of the prim and proper Brits to handle. Larita finds a way to butt heads with John’s extremely stuffy mother Mrs. Whittaker (Kristen Scott Thomas) at every turn and his father (Colin Firth) chooses to find humor every step of the way. Through family interaction and the ever brash manner of Larita, secrets are revealed, truths discovered, and the outcome is unexpected at best.
What a bore fest. I was not thrilled. Jessica Biel was on her game I suppose, but wherein I usually find significance in Colin Firth’s work, here I couldn’t care less. The story failed. The traditional British family doesn’t get along with the new crazy American wife. Ok, so? Most of the "secrets" weren’t that shocking and the ones that were seemed to be all but dismissed way too quickly. Everything seemed rushed to me and this movie wasn’t a minute shorter than any other feature length film.
On the plus side, Kristin Scott Thomas does her job quite well. She shows diversity as an actress and really shines. There is a silence about Thomas even though she absolutely lets her words be heard. You can tell that with every breath she dies inside a little more and is constantly struggling to keep that fact hidden. At one point she nearly breaks down in front of her son and she makes us feel just how hard it is to portray that weakness.
Some have reviewed this flick rather glowingly. I am not saying that it’s pure garbage by any means, but I just didn’t love it. There were good moments in it (the cinematography is great), but overall it just didn’t keep me fully interested. You can check it out and see for yourself, but I would never watch it again.
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