6.7/10
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80 user 133 critic

Easy Virtue (2008)

PG-13 | | Comedy, Romance | 19 June 2009 (USA)
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A young Englishman marries a glamorous American. When he brings her home to meet the parents, she arrives like a blast from the future - blowing their entrenched British stuffiness out the window.

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2 wins & 6 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Veronica Whittaker
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Jim McManus ...
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Jeremy Hooton ...
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Cook / Doris / Beatrice
Maggie Hickey ...
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Storyline

Between world wars, the Whittaker's estate is sinking; only the iron will of Mrs. Whittaker staves off bankruptcy while she awaits her son John's return from the continent. To her dismay, he brings a bride: an American widow who races cars. The bride, Larita, thinks she and John will visit and then go to London, where he'll work and she'll race. But John is to the manor born, and mother is nothing if not a master at plans and manipulation. Soon it's all-out war between mother and bride, with John's father, a burnt out veteran of the Great War, in the bride's corner ineffectually. Mother has a plan to join with the neighboring estate; only Larita is in her way. Can't we all get along? Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

In a family that prides itself as proper, vice becomes a virtue. See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for sexual content, brief partial nudity, and smoking throughout | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Official Sites:

Country:

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Language:

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Release Date:

19 June 2009 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Buenas costumbres  »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

£225,772 (UK) (14 November 2008)

Gross:

$2,656,324 (USA) (2 October 2009)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In the vintage Monte Carlo scene which opens the movie, when Larita first sees John both her and John's movements are slowed down while the rest of the cast play at 'normal' (i.e newsreel) speed. This was accomplished by filming the crowd, Larita, John, the background and the foreground mechanics separately against green screen and compositing them together at different speeds. See more »

Goofs

(at around 17 mins) Jessica Biel is referred to as "where is our beautiful cougar hiding" by Charlotte Riley. The term cougar meaning a predatory older woman was first used in Canada in 1989 and was certainly unheard of at the turn of the last century. See more »

Quotes

Mrs. Whittaker: What am I supposed to do with this bauble of a woman?
Mr. Whittaker: Hang her?
See more »

Crazy Credits

There's a Director Wrangler listed in the credits. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Late Night with Jimmy Fallon: Episode #1.59 (2009) See more »

Soundtracks

When You're Smiling
Written by Mark Fisher, Joe Goodwin and Larry Shay
Published by B. Feldman & Co / EMI Music Publishing Ltd (ASCAP)
Licensed courtesy of EMI Music Publishing Ltd
Performed by David Romano and Sean Palmer with The Easy Virtue Orchestra
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Light Frothy Fun and more
24 February 2010 | by See all my reviews

I enjoyed this movie a fair bit more than the average viewer, if ratings are to be believed.

This very British film is a nice switch from the typical Hollywood romantic comedy, and does not attempt to squeeze within the conventional mold which runs from Four weddings and a Funeral through Love Actually and beyond. The wry influence of the original Noel Coward play becomes fresh again decades later.

Colin Firth is especially adept underplaying the dissolute father in law. He is just there, being, not acting.Totally believable and convincing. When his character is illuminated in a brief soliloquy two thirds of the way through the movie, he is brilliant, and without the ham fisted exposition of so much modern writing, the entire family story is explained, and powerful social commentary on topics from hereditary lands to fox hunting to war to social decay to euthanasia are digested without chewing.

A great example of "Show, not tell".

Jessica Biel is beautiful, here as always, and is never requested to do more than she is capable of. I particularly liked how the film makers did not beat us over the head with her sexuality, going with a muted sensuality most of the movie, except in key scenes where her full power is unleashed to excellent effect.

Kristin Scott Thomas is well cast as the domineering disapproving mother in law, and the British supporting players are treats, though I thought Ben Barnes as the love interest lacked the presence to hold his own in this cast.

We could use more movies like this.


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