Noel Coward is reputed to have quipped "Wit ought to be a glorious treat like caviar; never spread it about like marmalade", and from all reports our Australian screenwriters Stephan Elliott ("Priscilla, Queen of the Desert") and Sheridan Jobbins have served up a perfectly delectable treat with their screenwriting of Coward's 1920s play, "Easy Virtue", which had its world premiere at the Toronto Film Festival this week.
Look at this delicious trailer...
In short, a young upper-class Englishman [played by Ben Barnes] marries a brassy blonde American divorcee [played by Jessica Biel] after a whirlwind romance in the South of France but must return home to face his family, headed by his cold and controlling mother [Kristen Scott Thomas] and war-shattered father [Colin Friel].
Apparently there follows the usual comedy of manners critiquing British class and society, with all the clever repartee we expect of Noel Coward, deftly infused with champagne sparkle by Elliott and Jobbins, and elegantly filmed by Ealing Studios at one of those glorious English country houses I love to imagine I own!
My kind of film! I can hardly wait for its release here (January 22 next year) because I can't get enough of English period pieces - and of course Noel Coward's wonderfully acerbic wit is always a treat. Am I showing my age here?
[Apparently Ben Barnes provides luscious eye-candy too....]
Toronto International Film Festival
Reuters review by Kirk Honeycutt