Mixed or average reviews - based on 22 Critics What's this?

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Mixed or average reviews- based on 7 Ratings

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  • Starring: ,
  • Summary: A romantic drama based on the controversial true story of Jeanne De La Motte Valois, a countess whose name was stripped from her by the Royal Family during the late 18th Century. The story of her fight to restore her name and proper place in society is filled with mystery, intrigue and desire, with an infamous diamond necklace at the center of it all. (Warner Bros.) Expand
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 4 out of 22
  2. Negative: 4 out of 22
  1. Shyer and Sweet bring consistent clarity and ever-increasing depth to the playing out of Jeanne's bold scheming and single-minded resolve; a tone of brisk wit gives way effortlessly to poignancy and ultimately tragedy.
  2. It's beautiful and obvious, a dubious combination that may nonetheless ensure its success.
  3. The affair of the necklace itself is so complex and many-sided that it would take a Sidney Lumet to do justice to it on film.
  4. Nobody seems to know quite what he's doing in this opulent but fairly empty period fashion show, apart from campy overactors like Christopher Walken and Jonathan Pryce who appear eager to fill the voids left by their colleagues.
  5. 50
    Swank is painfully uncharismatic, leaving Christopher Walken, in the minor role of occultist Count Cagliostro, to decamp with any scene in which he appears. His performance may not be historically credible, but it's hugely entertaining: Would that the same were true of the film overall.
  6. 50
    The best thing I can say about it is that the costumes and the hambone acting keep it from being a deadly bore.
  7. Reviewed by: Todd McCarthy
    A staggeringly misguided stab at making the past come alive by people who have absolutely no feel for period filmmaking. Banal at best and laughable at worst.

See all 22 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 3 out of 5
  2. Negative: 1 out of 5
  1. CharlesT.
    Aug 19, 2006
    Miscast but still entertaining, Shyer's best film.
  2. MishaL.
    Jun 30, 2007
    One doesn't expect *much* accuracy from historical movies bearing the legend "based on a true story." This film, however, frames the characters' actions badly and goes out of its way to invent wholly fictional motivations. Joely Richardson is to be commended for having studied the actual events and to have portrayed her character true-to-life. I can't condemn Hilary Swank for accepting such a meaty role in this nonsense script, but the real Jeanne was no unfairly disenfranchised victim. Expand

See all 5 User Reviews