Belle (2013)
First screened in June 2014
Director: Amma Asante. Cast: Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Tom Wilkinson, Sam Reid, Sarah Gadon, Emily Watson, Penelope Wilton, Miranda Richardson, James Norton, Tom Felton, Alan McKenna, Matthew Goode, Lauren Julien-Box, Cara Jenkins, Alex Jennings, Timothy Walker, Rupert Wickham. Screenplay: Misan Sagay.

Twitter Capsule: Flawed direction: banal visuals, cast not fully in sync. But material is eye-opening, and Mbatha-Raw's pretty special in it.

Second Capsule: My friend Miriam just referred to Belle as "Merchant Ebony and Ivory." I think I'm going to lease her my entire website.

VOR:   Scholars, historians will savor this, even if they debate it. Old-fashioned in many ways, though that makes its departures more pointed. A modest but real intervention.

Photo © 2013 BFI/DJ Films/Isle of Man Film,
© 2014 Fox Searchlight Pictures

Not yet reviewed in full. Grade: B–

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