Easy Virtue Reviews

  • Jessica Biel in a teacup-rattling '20s period piece? With her lewd pinup grin and husky flat voice, she sticks out like a sore starlet in Easy Virtue -- but that's the whole point in this loosely 'freshened up' version of a Noel Coward play.

    Owen Gleiberman — Entertainment Weekly

  • In its cold-eyed assessment of the English aristocracy Easy Virtue has none of the lurking Anglophilia found in Merchant-Ivory movies.

    Stephen Holden — New York Times

  • Firth and Biel perform a rather elegant tango together, which cheers things up a little, but this is a heavy-footed affair.

    Peter Bradshaw — Guardian [UK]

  • Goes down as light and fizzily as a flute of Champagne tossed back in an airy drawing room.

    Claudia Puig — USA Today

  • What might've been a scrumptious, chocolatey dessert of a movie -- a Noel Coward delite -- is instead a scoop of lemon ice, not filling, faintly sweet and mostly water.

    Dan Zak — Washington Post

  • Those coming in cold may be forgiven for thinking they've wandered into Atonement remade as a farce.

    Ty Burr — Boston Globe

  • Stephan Elliott's deliciously cheeky screen adaptation of one of the satirist's lesser-known jabs at the British upper crust will charm your pants off.

    Ella Taylor — Village Voice

  • Unusually for a play by Noel Coward, Love struggles while conquering All in Easy Virtue, a subversive view of British country-house society between the wars.

    Roger Ebert — Chicago Sun-Times

  • Elliott nearly turns the whole affair into a musical, with characters singing snatches of Coward and Cole Porter songs. But his sense of humor is extremely broad.

    Michael Phillips — Chicago Tribune

  • The only characters who seem anchored in some form of reality are the hero's parents...all the others, from siblings to servants, are standard-issue eccentrics or the subjects of running gags.

    Jonathan Rosenbaum — Chicago Reader

  • Full of forced jocularity and drawing-room hissy fits, with its cast parading around in vintage threads and antique cars, Easy Virtue is a close-to-insufferable souffle based on the 1925 Noel Coward play.

    Steven Rea — Philadelphia Inquirer

  • These are good actors telling a good story, so the virtue is indeed easy to grasp, and a fine time should be had by all.

    Tom Long — Detroit News

  • Jessica Biel gets more publicity for her body and her boyfriend than for her acting ability, but Easy Virtue may be cause for a reassessment.

    Bill Goodykoontz — Arizona Republic

  • All told, a sparkling, classy and ultimately satisfying experience.

    Rex Reed — New York Observer

  • A fine cast makes sure Noel Coward's champagne remains bubbly in Easy Virtue, an effervescent entertainment.

    Todd McCarthy — Variety

  • The first Noel Coward play to hit the big screen in more than 40 years, Easy Virtue is a crass, heavy- handed and -- most unfor givably -- largely laugh-free adaptation of The Master's infrequently revived 1924 comic melodrama.

    Lou Lumenick — New York Post

  • A winning, witty fox trot through the Roaring 20s, when men were men, women were liberating themselves and the 'to the manner born' were losing their grip on their manners -- and manors.

    Roger Moore — Orlando Sentinel

  • Full of gorgeous architecture and sightlines but a bit too cold for comfort and with an all-too pervasive air of tedium.

    Bruce Demara — Toronto Star

  • Easy Virtue has enough traces of Coward's wit to keep you hoping for the first hour or so, but then the film collapses under the weight of too many misguided innovations.

    Liam Lacey — Globe and Mail

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