Emma – ★★★★✩

Certificate – U
Directed By – Autumn de Wilde
Starring – Anya Taylor-Joy, Bill Nighy, Johnny Flynn, Josh O’Connor, Mia Goth, Callum Turner, Miranda Hart, Tanya Reynolds.
Running Time – 125 Minutes (2 Hours 5 Minutes)

If I’m honest, I’ve never had any interest in Jane Austin’s books or films (maybe I’m scared of reading her books because of my dyslexia). However, upon seeing the first trailer, I was hooked despite not knowing what Emma was actually about.

Granted a lot was down to Taylor-Joy and the always solid Nighy, but the whole film had a decent British cast. So I was excited to see the movie and an ideal movie to come out on Valentine’s Day.

Image via Universal

What Is Emma About?

The beloved June Austin comedy is about finding your equal and finding your happy ending. Handsome, clever, and rich, Emma Woodhouse (Taylor-Joy) is a restless queen without rivals in her sleepy little town. In this glittering satire of social class and the pain of growing up, Emma must adventure through misguided matches and romantic missteps to find the love that has been there all along.

Is It Any Good?

Going in blind, I didn’t know what to expect, but Emma is an incredibly delightful and hilarious film and in many cases is the original romantic comedy.

Wilde does a wonderful job bringing this story to life, giving it a modern feel and using pastel colours in her filming and it made it feel like a painting and easily relaxes you.

Image via Universal

It’s maybe the reason why this is a film that can be watched and enjoyed by everyone, and in the end, that’s the wonderful thing Wilde’s created.

However, this family-friendliness doesn’t stop it from being incredibly sexy. From a lot of thigh and bottom action from Flynn to more leg from Taylor-Joy and there’s sexual tension in eye contact and barn dances.

Image via Universal

As for the cast, they all do an excellent job. The standout being O’Connor, who’s becoming more of one of the top British talents delivering many of the comedic moments both by himself and with Reynolds’ Mrs Elton.

Image via Universal

Elsewhere, Nighy is solid as always playing the best character the 70-year-old can play himself; the only difference is he’s in period costume.

I don’t know how he can do the simplest things like jumping down the stairs makes him instantly likeable, and it continues throughout the film.

Let’s focus on the Taylor-Joy who plays a complicated character (and again as someone who’s never read the book or seen previous adaptations) and found her journey interesting.

Image via Universal

Because in a lot of ways Emma is a horrible person forcing her friend Harriet (Goth) to look elsewhere in class standing instead of the man she loves and has to be the centre of attention in this light she is the OG mean girl. Then, on the other hand, she’s a sweetheart who cares about her friend Miss Smith and loves a battle of the minds with George Knightley (Flynn).

Finally, both lead men Flynn and Turner do a decent job playing to the two sides of Emma, but it’s clear from the beginning who she should end up with.

Anything Bad About The Film?

I didn’t have any issues. The one thing that got to me was the runtime I do think being slightly over two hours was too long.

Verdict

A delightful, funny and sometimes sexy movie. Taylor-Joy does a fantastic job as Emma, but it’s O’Connor that steals the film in this modern feeling adaptation of this classic story.

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