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62

Generally favorable reviews - based on 34 Critics What's this?

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8.0

Generally favorable reviews- based on 47 Ratings

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  • Starring: , ,
  • Summary: Long before the concept existed, the Duchess of Devonshire, Georgiana Spencer, was the original “It Girl.” Like her direct ancestor Princess Diana, she was ravishing, glamorous and adored by an entire country. Determined to be a player in the wider affairs of the world, she proved that sheLong before the concept existed, the Duchess of Devonshire, Georgiana Spencer, was the original “It Girl.” Like her direct ancestor Princess Diana, she was ravishing, glamorous and adored by an entire country. Determined to be a player in the wider affairs of the world, she proved that she could out-gamble, out-drink and outwit most of the aristocratic men who surrounded her. She helped usher in sweeping changes to England as a leader of the forward-thinking Whig Party. But even as her power and popularity grew, she was haunted by the fact that the only man in England she seemingly could not seduce was her very own husband, the Duke. And when she tried to find her own way to be true to her heart and loyal to her duty, the resulting controversies and convoluted liaisons would leave all of London talking. (Paramount Vantage) Expand
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 22 out of 34
  2. Negative: 1 out of 34
  1. 88
    This is not one of those delightful movies based on a Jane Austen novel. It is about hard realists, constrained in a stifling system and using whatever weapons they can command.
  2. An uncommonly well-crafted historical feminist tearjerker--both anti-patriarchal and a monument to motherhood.
  3. Reviewed by: Claudia Puig
    75
    Princess Diana's antecedent, both genetically and figuratively, was a beautiful and glamorous duchess named Georgiana Spencer. Like her descendant, her charm and vivacity captivated England.
  4. 67
    Ultimately, though, it's unfortunate that the movie tries to make so many oblique comparisons to more modern tragedy (paparazzi with sketchbooks; yes, we get it!), since Georgiana's life seems fascinating enough on its own.
  5. Reviewed by: Ty Burr
    63
    At a certain point, The Duchess stops attending to the topiary and becomes a women's melodrama instead.
  6. Reviewed by: John Anderson
    60
    It's too bad there's not more substance to The Duchess, because there's lots of acting and, as is required of a Brit-styled period piece, lushness galore.
  7. 38
    Everything is predictable three scenes in advance, and it's all stale, stuck, stolid.

See all 34 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 20 out of 20
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 20
  3. Negative: 0 out of 20
  1. AndresV.
    Feb 9, 2009
    10
    very good movie, but no perfect! great perfomances
  2. AlanM.
    Sep 23, 2008
    10
    Must be seen - brilliant stuff from Knightley and Feinnes.
  3. LaurenS.
    Oct 19, 2008
    10
    Great movie! Knightley and Fiennes are both quite good, but KK is the star here and does a surprisingly good job (because it's that Great movie! Knightley and Fiennes are both quite good, but KK is the star here and does a surprisingly good job (because it's that good). The critics' reviews on here do not do the film justice. There is some fulff, but it is well-written, well-acted, and tugs at your heart. I think a lot of why the critics reviews on here aren't so great is beacuse it is a girl movie but obviously they got nothing from the movie b/c they are propogating the same attiudes toward women that the movie speaks about. I am not sure about how accurate it is but VERY good! liked it and i'm a tough crowd. Expand
  4. BillyS.
    Oct 26, 2008
    8
    Though it lacks the opulence and scale of Sophia Coppolla's Marie Antoinette it more than makes up for it with a great screenplay and Though it lacks the opulence and scale of Sophia Coppolla's Marie Antoinette it more than makes up for it with a great screenplay and some truly brilliant performances from Keira Knightley, Ralph Feinnes and Hayley Atwell, plus the legendary Charlotte Rampling in a small, but scene stealing role. The Duchess is one of those small gems you go in to with no expectations and leave surprized at just how much you fell into it. Expand
  5. Feb 13, 2015
    8
    Fine performances from all of the leads, and the locations are exquisite. The story of the abuse of the Duchess of Devonshire by herFine performances from all of the leads, and the locations are exquisite. The story of the abuse of the Duchess of Devonshire by her despicable husband will make you feel sad, but it's an excellent movie. Expand
  6. JH
    Feb 3, 2009
    8
    Wonderful actors, a terrific script, and a thoroughly engaging story make this a must-see movie.
  7. EnriqueP.
    Jan 12, 2009
    6
    The Duchess is a favourable movie in general. First of all, i have to say that Keira is so repetitive in her performance, that is the less i The Duchess is a favourable movie in general. First of all, i have to say that Keira is so repetitive in her performance, that is the less i liked about the movie actually!!!! c'mon she can do a better performance because she is a really good actress. Finnes does a great job and really transmits his feelings with his simple look! He is definitely better than Keira through out the film. The custom design is wonderull and the art direction too. Maybe it is very monotonous and there is a point where you want to stop the movie! It has also very good pieces starting with the adaptation. Thes story is great and it is well narrated in the big screen. Its good to see! Expand

See all 20 User Reviews

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