Mark Palansky (2006)

U Certificate


Our Score
This stilted modern fairy tale set in a weird storybook conglomeration of Manhattan and London is a role-reversal take on Beauty and the Beast, but is too bland for adults and too grounded in reality for youngsters. Christina Ricci stars as the eponymous wealthy recluse who was born with a pig snout as the result of a secret family curse. Tabloid reporter Peter Dinklage (the only good thing in the movie) hires down-on-his-luck gambler Max (James McAvoy) to take photos of Penelope's face. But could Max turn out to be her Prince Charming? Along with the heavy-handed direction of this empty piece of whimsy, the twists are too predictable, the slapstick farce too broad and the roster of British comics in minor roles (Lenny Henry, Russell Brand, Ronni Ancona) a hollow gimmick. Equally pointless is the cameo from Reese Witherspoon (the film's producer) as a motorbike messenger, which adds further Hollywood peculiarity to the stodgy artifice. The fact Penelope really isn't that ugly doesn't help, either.


An heiress is born with the nose of a pig due to a curse on her family - an enchantment that can only be lifted by finding a man who loves her. As she reaches adulthood, her story piques the interest of a tabloid reporter, who, determined to get a photograph of her nose, hires a down-on-his-luck gambler for the task. However, the desperate hack fails to count on romance getting in the way. Romantic fantasy, starring Christina Ricci, James McAvoy and Peter Dinklage.

Cast & Crew

Penelope Wilhern Christina Ricci
Max James McAvoy
Jessica Wilhern Catherine O'Hara
Lemon Peter Dinklage
Franklin Wilhern Richard E Grant
Annie Reese Witherspoon
Edward Vanderman Simon Woods
Aunt Wanda Ronni Ancona
Jake / Witch Michael Feast
Mr Vanderman Nigel Havers
Sam, jazz club owner Russell Brand
Gambler Nick Frost
Larry Burn Gorman
Krull Lenny Henry
Director Mark Palansky
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Other Information

Language: EnglishColourTheatrical distributor: Momentum PicturesAvailable on: DVDReleased on: 1 Feb 2008