Metascore
81

Universal acclaim - based on 34 Critics What's this?

User Score
7.1

Generally favorable reviews- based on 75 Ratings

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  • Starring: , ,
  • Summary: London 1818: a secret love affair begins between 23 year old English poet, John Keats, and the girl next door, Fanny Brawne, and outspoken student of fashion. This unlikely pair started at odds, he thinking her a stylish minx, she unimpressed by literature in general. It was the illness ofLondon 1818: a secret love affair begins between 23 year old English poet, John Keats, and the girl next door, Fanny Brawne, and outspoken student of fashion. This unlikely pair started at odds, he thinking her a stylish minx, she unimpressed by literature in general. It was the illness of Keats' younger brother that drew them together. Keats was touched by Fanny's efforts to help and agreed to teach her poetry. By the time Fanny's alarmed mother and Keats' best friend Brown realized their attachment, the relationship had an unstoppable momentum. Intensely and helplessly absorbed in each other, the young lovers were swept into powerful new sensation, "I have the feeling as if I were dissolving," Keats wrote her. Together they rode a wave of romantic obsession that deepened as their troubles mounted. Only Keats' illness proved insurmountable. (Apparition) Expand
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 30 out of 34
  2. Negative: 0 out of 34
  1. Intimate as a whisper, immediate as a blush, and universal as first love, the PG-rated film positively palpitates with the sensual and spiritual.
  2. Campion's big-sisterly encouragement of Cornish's lovely, openhearted performance -- and Whishaw's well-matched response -- results in a character instantly, intimately recognizable to anyone remembering her own first love.
  3. Reviewed by: Todd McCarthy
    90
    Breaking through any period-piece mustiness with piercing insight into the emotions and behavior of her characters, the writer-director examines the final years in the short life of 19th-century romantic poet John Keats through the eyes of his beloved, Fanny Brawne, played by Abbie Cornish in an outstanding performance.
  4. For a movie so sensuously mounted, it's remarkably grounded.
  5. 75
    Bright Star is the New Zealand writer-director's raw, sensual attempt to render Keats as experienced by a young girl who couldn't understand the genius of his verse.
  6. Mainly, though, it's the exquisite restraint - both of Cornish's performance and Campion's direction - that gives the film its power.
  7. Writer-director Jane Campion approaches the tale with an artiste’s respectful solemnity, but it too often comes off like "Twilight" transplanted across oceans and centuries.

See all 34 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 22 out of 32
  2. Negative: 8 out of 32
  1. Nov 8, 2014
    10
    An intimate and flawless film worthy of the highest praise... one of Jane Champion's best works. This movie is quite, subtle and masterfullyAn intimate and flawless film worthy of the highest praise... one of Jane Champion's best works. This movie is quite, subtle and masterfully directed, written, and acted. Ben Whishaw is a marvel. Expand
  2. GaryM
    Oct 6, 2009
    10
    Beautifully realized film, so tender and delicate. Both performances are deep and moving. Its subtlety may go over some heads but I found it Beautifully realized film, so tender and delicate. Both performances are deep and moving. Its subtlety may go over some heads but I found it to be an exceptional film. Expand
  3. Aug 18, 2013
    9
    I watched this years ago just cause, I wasn't sure what I was going to get. This was a profoundly touching movie. I'm not sure why I seeI watched this years ago just cause, I wasn't sure what I was going to get. This was a profoundly touching movie. I'm not sure why I see reviews bashing it for being "too slow". Come on it's a drama and it's about real life. What do you think is going to happen? Some action packed scene with explosions? No it's not that kind of movie. If you wanted that you should have watched you know... an ACTION movie not a british drama. Dramas can be very slow but this one did not bother me because of the emotions it captured through amazing shots and acting. I was in tears many times in different points in this movie. NOT feelings of sadness or emotion ACTUAL crying that I could not stop. It's very rare a movie can do that to me. Overall a hugely ignored movie by the public and if you have not seen it you should. Expand
  4. roberti
    Oct 18, 2009
    8
    Real love, between the star-crossed, shines from Bright Star. We feel the simple, insatiable thirst that love brings, in a thoroughly modern Real love, between the star-crossed, shines from Bright Star. We feel the simple, insatiable thirst that love brings, in a thoroughly modern period retelling. And unlike the slew of self-aware biopics of the last decade, here the hitherto unseen Keats speaks, and the love that animated him comes to life again. She warms us even now. A pen! Collapse
  5. KenG
    Oct 22, 2009
    7
    I don't know if the true life version of this love story was as chaste as this movie makes it seem, but otherwise this film does solid I don't know if the true life version of this love story was as chaste as this movie makes it seem, but otherwise this film does solid work all around. Expand
  6. WillB
    Oct 3, 2009
    3
    When the whole of Keats' "Ode to a Nightingale" is read over the credits, any emotion the well-done cinematography and acting has When the whole of Keats' "Ode to a Nightingale" is read over the credits, any emotion the well-done cinematography and acting has managed to ring out of Campion's uninspired writing is revealed as quite forgettable and useless in comparison to the incandescent emotional output of the film's subject. The problem is that the film expects romance to stand on its own, when Keats' work is about a romance with art so strong that the rest of the world bends around it. Expand
  7. RonL.
    Sep 30, 2009
    1
    For the second time in 30 years, I walked out on a movie. When the most entertaining thing is the scenery and the most exciting moment is a For the second time in 30 years, I walked out on a movie. When the most entertaining thing is the scenery and the most exciting moment is a rainstorm, you've got yourself one really boring film. (Well, Keats does cough up blood at one point.) No one does anything and nothing happens. Jane Campion has come up with her answer to waterboarding. Expand

See all 32 User Reviews

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