Metascore
64

Generally favorable reviews - based on 28 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 20 out of 28
  2. Negative: 0 out of 28
  1. Reviewed by: Roger Ebert
    Oct 20, 2010
    88
    Tamara Drewe is one of those British comedies in which, one way or another, we envy all of the characters.
  2. Reviewed by: Ella Taylor
    Oct 20, 2010
    85
    On its own terms, Tamara Drewe is a hugely exuberant black comedy, unfolding over four scenic seasons at a writer's retreat set in a rose-strewn village overrun by city bobos in search of authenticity.
  3. Reviewed by: Peter Rainer
    Oct 20, 2010
    83
    Erotic comedies are often attempted but rarely realized. Tamara Drewe is proof that sexy and funny need not be mutually exclusive.
  4. Reviewed by: Ray Bennett
    Oct 20, 2010
    80
    Jaunty and entertaining.
  5. Reviewed by: Angie Errigo
    Oct 20, 2010
    80
    Think The Archers with a sprinkling of trendier folk and a lot more shagging. Very intelligently funny, with stellar performances.
  6. Reviewed by: Richard Mowe
    Oct 20, 2010
    80
    The deadly sins of envy, lust and salacious gossip in deepest rural England provide the motor for Stephen Frears's black romp, featuring vivacious former Bond girl Gemma Arterton.
  7. Reviewed by: Joe Williams
    Dec 17, 2010
    75
    It's a tart trifle, but in the madding crowd of year-end movies, Tamara Drewe rocks.
  8. Reviewed by: Steve Persall
    Dec 8, 2010
    75
    The cast is delightful top to bottom, although Arterton's role is chiefly defined by seductive smiles and the rise of her cut-off shorts. Allam and Cooper are standouts, creating hormonally despicable characters getting more of Tamara's attention than they deserve.
  9. Reviewed by: Michael O'Sullivan
    Oct 21, 2010
    75
    In addition to all the rollicking, ribald humor, Tamara Drewe also has a couple of flashes of darkly comic violence. In a literary sense, it's poetic justice, really. Punishment meted out for bad behavior.
  10. Reviewed by: Lou Lumenick
    Oct 20, 2010
    75
    A real old-fashioned crowd-pleaser.
  11. Reviewed by: Noel Murray
    Oct 20, 2010
    75
    While Tamara Drew is enjoyable throughout-right up to its loony, loony ending-it's more than a little scattered.
  12. Reviewed by: J. Hoberman
    Oct 20, 2010
    70
    Frears might have accelerated the comic pacing, but the story is a good one and events come nicely to a boil.
  13. Reviewed by: Richard Corliss
    Oct 20, 2010
    70
    So here's my second and final verdict on the movie: it's as captivating as its heroine.
  14. Reviewed by: Leslie Felperin
    Oct 20, 2010
    70
    Adapted from a comicstrip-turned-graphic novel by Posy Simmonds, which was itself based on Thomas Hardy's "Far From the Madding Crowd," picture represents a satirical but soft-biting swipe at contempo middle-class mores among Blighty's chattering countryside classes.
  15. Reviewed by: Joe Morgenstern
    Oct 20, 2010
    70
    The story's literary underpinnings are hilariously represented by the denizens of a seedy writers' retreat situated near Tamara's old house, which she has come back to reclaim after her mother's death.
  16. Reviewed by: J.R. Jones
    Oct 20, 2010
    70
    Thomas Hardy it's not, but as far as middlebrow British romances go, better this than "Love Actually."
  17. Reviewed by: Stephanie Zacharek
    Oct 20, 2010
    65
    Most of Stephen Frears' Tamara Drewe is so breezily entertaining, and so bracingly clear-eyed about what total pains in the asses writers can be, that its final 15 minutes feel like an all-wrong slap in the face.
  18. Reviewed by: Claudia Puig
    Oct 21, 2010
    63
    Tamara Drewe is so light, it's almost pure froth.
  19. Reviewed by: Michael Phillips
    Oct 21, 2010
    63
    It's easy to watch.
  20. Reviewed by: Ty Burr
    Oct 20, 2010
    63
    A frolic that keeps tripping over its own gorgeous feet.
  21. Reviewed by: Keith Uhlich
    Oct 20, 2010
    60
    Strikingly picturesque locations and a terrific ensemble cast help this tonally inconsistent adaptation of Posy Simmonds's comic series pass by with relative ease, though it leaves a very peculiar aftertaste.
  22. Reviewed by: Roger Moore
    Dec 8, 2010
    50
    While we may ogle Tamara, blush at her charms and revel in her world, in the end Tarama Drewe is just a bit of Brit tease that doesn't come off.
  23. Reviewed by: Mike Scott
    Dec 7, 2010
    50
    If there's a breath of fresh air in it all, it's in the form of the young actress Jessica Barden playing a smoking, swearing, Tom Sawyer-flavored teenage delinquent determined to add some life to her excruciatingly boring rural existence.
  24. Reviewed by: Mick LaSalle
    Oct 20, 2010
    50
    The tone is both satiric and serious, zany but heartfelt, and for a while - maybe 20 minutes - all seems well.
  25. Reviewed by: Owen Gleiberman
    Oct 20, 2010
    50
    This rotely cheeky, Anglo-plastic adultery comedy is set in the golden-green English countryside, and it makes a few quirky nods toward artistry, but it's really just a glib concoction.
  26. Reviewed by: Robert Abele
    Oct 20, 2010
    50
    It all leaves "Drewe" and its often jarring turns of motivation and tone - feeling haphazard and cartoony, and the whole thing more a vibrant mess than something comically disarming.
  27. Reviewed by: A.O. Scott
    Oct 20, 2010
    50
    There is something shallow and cautious about this film, which strains to maintain a glib, cheery demeanor that is not always appropriate to the details of the story.
  28. Reviewed by: Elizabeth Weitzman
    Oct 20, 2010
    40
    The book itself is an easy read -- conveniently enough, it shouldn't take you more than two hours. So you might want to skip the discordant copy, and use that time to discover the real thing.
User Score
6.5

Generally favorable reviews- based on 23 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 3 out of 6
  2. Negative: 0 out of 6
  1. Nov 29, 2012
    4
    Oh dear. This proved to be a fairly mediocre mess of a film. So much cliche, full of mostly bland, forgettable characters. Gemma Arterton is fine, as are most of the performers, but some like the excellent Tamsin Greig deserve better. One particularly cringeworthy scene features Dominic Cooper woo-ing Gemma Arterton by playing the drums on pots and pans with his feet... I guess that's love. It even manages to mess up the one good relationship in the whole film. Disappointing. Full Review »
  2. Jan 1, 2012
    4
    Other than a general tendency not to want to pan a movie entirely, I'm not sure what I'm giving it 4 for. The majority of the characters were uniformly unpleasant, the quantity of swearing off-putting (though that's how we know it's a Brit comedy I suppose) and the general themes rather over-worked and reworked without humour. Tamsin Greig's Beth was just about worthy, though coming across so down-trodden it was difficult to feel very much sympathy, even in the face of Nicholas' infidelity and insufferable smugness (something Roger Allam does very well). Arterton's Drewe is just plain colourless. Whilst the camera loved her curves, there was little else on show: no motivation, no sympathy, no humour.

    Comparisons with Hardy's Far From the Madding Crowd are obvious, but unworthy, and the fact that it was based on a graphic novel is no excuse for cartoon characters that are spiked with inhumanity, rather than leavened with humanity.
    Full Review »
  3. Feb 24, 2011
    8
    A solidly middling Stephen Frears film--not a masterpiece like "Laundrette" or "Liaisons" or "High Fidelity," but not a bomb like "Mary Reilly." In "Tamara Drewe," we see familiar strengths on display: fully fleshed characters navigating minefields of desire with consequences alternately dire and ridiculous. But something about the film seems a little stale. Familiar stories abound: e.g. the ugly duckling who becomes a swan; the adulterous writer who claims art as his license; Far from the Madding Crowd. A third of the way in, it's clear who will get a happy ending--and why and with whom. Snore. For me, however, two 15-year-old troublemakers save the film from mawkishness. Whether egging cars or dabbling in more serious crime, their desperate boredom reveals a dark side to country living, and the film makes them, at once, perfectly appalling and enormously sympathetic. Jessica Barden and Charlotte Christie are wonderful as the teenagers, sharing an appetite for an imagined life elsewhere but otherwise very different. And it's smart and ironic that so many plot developments issue from their meddling, given their limited understanding of what they do. All in all, "Tamara Drewe" kept me engaged as I was watching, but I didn't have much to chew on afterward. Full Review »