6.9/10
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142 user 103 critic

The Importance of Being Earnest (2002)

In 1890s London, two friends use the same pseudonym ("Ernest") for their on-the-sly activities. Hilarity ensues.

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Writers:

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2 wins & 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Pew Opener
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Dowager
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Guy Bensley ...
Christina Robert ...
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Storyline

Two young gentlemen living in 1890's England use the same pseudonym ("Ernest") on the sly, which is fine until they both fall in love with women using that name, which leads to a comedy of mistaken identities... Written by arson83

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Everybody Loves Ernest... But Nobody's Quite Sure Who He Really Is.

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for mild sensuality | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

Official Sites:

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Country:

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Language:

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Release Date:

21 June 2002 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Ernst sein ist alles  »

Box Office

Budget:

$15,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$500,447 (USA) (24 May 2002)

Gross:

$8,378,141 (USA) (27 September 2002)
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The scenes where Rupert Everett slaps Colin Firth on his rear end and where Everett kisses Firth's cheek were ad libs. Director Oliver Parker thought Firth's stunned reaction was so humorous he decided to leave them in. See more »

Goofs

Gwendolen is shown driving a car out to Jack's country house. However, later in dialog with Cecily taken from the original play, she mentions having taken the train out. Later, Lady Bracknell mentions them both returning by train, which would have left the car in the country. See more »

Quotes

[while Algy is pretending to be Jack's brother]
Jack: [whispering] Algy! Algy! Algy!
[Algy looks around, as if wondering who Jack's calling]
Jack: Ernest.
Algy: Ah, good morning, dear fellow.
See more »

Crazy Credits

After the funeral for Bunbury, Colin Firth's Earnest is seen getting a tattoo of "Gwendolyn" on his posterior See more »

Connections

Version of Kak vazhno byt seryoznym (1976) See more »

Soundtracks

Lady Come Down
Music written by Charlie Mole
Lyrics by Oscar Wilde
Performed by Colin Firth and Rupert Everett
Courtesy of Fragile Music Ltd.
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User Reviews

 
The Importance of Being Witty
10 May 2005 | by (Sydney, Australia) – See all my reviews

I have always been a great fan of Oscar Wilde, and consider him as a playwright to be under-rated. His plays are often dismissed as shallow, but they are some of the greatest comedic writings of all time, in my opinion. The witty repartee that Wilde's characters engage in, particularly in The Importance of Being Earnest, is hilarious in most performances.

What a pity, then, that this production of it drags its feet like a drunken yeti (Yes, that's right, a drunken yeti. Use your imagination). It is slow and ponderous, where it should be quickly paced and light. It is morbid and dramatic, where it should be witty and amusing. The screenwriter of this adaptation and the director both deserve to be lined up against a wall and shot. And I simply cannot describe what should be done to Colin Firth, who plays an exceedingly dull and moronic Jack Worthington that would never have survived in London society.

In a movie that should have had the audience cackling with mirth from start to finish, the chuckles were very sparse. Most were provided either by Judi Dench, who brings some true Wildian spirit to the movie as Lady Bracknell, and Reece Witherspoon as the innocently shallow Cecily (but what the #@$& were those 'knight in shining armor' dream scenes?).

Wilde I may love, but not this movie. My rating? A disappointing 4 out of 10!


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