Critic Reviews



Based on 32 critic reviews provided by Metacritic.com
W.E.'s is a kind of dynamic pleasure that allows for non-shameful identification with the feminine and a fantasy of becoming what we see.
There is little human interest or excitement. It isn't written that way. The music and the dialogue seem curiously even and muted, and there aren't the kinds of drama we expect in a biopic. Everyone is too restrained and discreet to expose themselves that way.
This jagged blob of a movie features a solo dance in the 1930s scored to the Sex Pistols' "Pretty Vacant," several scenes of a rich Manhattan woman chatting with the ghost of Wallis Simpson and a Sotheby's auction that draws a crowd reaction of the kind associated with "Family Feud." Yet I found the movie fascinating. Except for the boring bits.
W.E. is actually two intertwining stories - or maybe, more accurately, two stories clumsily rubbing against each other in an awkward attempt to set off a spark.
Madonna the director deserves a script better than the one Madonna the screenwriter handed off to her. The movie is full of incidents that don't quite cohere into a story - kind of like a Power Point presentation without a throughline.
As easy on the eyes and ears as it is embalmed from any dramatic point of view.
The movie is a folly, a desultory vanity project for its director and co-writer. But for those very reasons, W.E., by world-renowned personage and lesser-known filmmaker Madonna, is not without twisted interest.
W.E., Madonna's second go at directing a feature film, leaves one wishing she'd find other creative outlets for those times when she's bored with the pop-star life.
While W.E. cannot be counted as a successful directorial effort, there are genuine elements of interest here. The most notable is a nervy central performance from Andrea Riseborough, who plays true-life Baltimore socialite Wallis Simpson.
Here's Madge one more time doing something for which she is eminently unsuited - directing.
Whatever else W.E. may be (lousy, a waste of time, tin-eared, sleep-inducing, occasionally laughable, etc.), it's sincere and ambitious.
Wall Street Journal
The director's apparent blindness to the epic banality of her subjects suggests that the whole project is one royally misguided mess.

More Critic Reviews

See all external reviews for W.E. (2011) »

See also

Awards | FAQ | User Reviews | User Ratings | External Reviews | Message Board