What Maisie Knew

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What Maisie Knew

Scott McGehee (2013)

15 Certificate


Our Score
Henry James's classic novel about feckless high-society parents in 1890s London is transposed to modern-day New York in this drama tracing the emotional effect of acrimonious divorce on their young daughter. In this effective update retaining the book's central thrust, the mother (Julianne Moore) is now a megastar rock singer in a career hiatus, the father (Steve Coogan) a jocular yet self-involved art dealer. Both exploit six-year-old Maisie (Onata Aprile) for their own selfish ends in an ongoing custody battle. Directors Scott McGehee and David Siegel capture the painful story of a child learning that mummy and daddy are no longer fully there for her, but do so without hyped-up Hollywood sentiment. Instead they simply eavesdrop on the naturalistic performances and allow the audience to register the deception and betrayal of the child. Little Ms Aprile is utterly believable, Moore absolutely committed to a largely unsympathetic role and Coogan quite superb as the father singularly unequipped for his role. Astute, classy and very affecting.


A six-year-old girl finds herself a pawn in the ongoing divorce of her self-absorbed mother and father, who are both desperate to get custody of the child but blind to her own feelings. As both parents begin disastrous new relationships, the youngster is forced to develop an unexpected maturity to cope with her situation. Drama, starring Julianne Moore and Steve Coogan.

Cast & Crew

Susanna Julianne Moore
Lincoln Alexander Skarsgård
Beale Steve Coogan
Maisie Onata Aprile
Margo Joanna Vanderham
Zoe Sadie Rae Lee
Zoe's father Stephen Mailer
Zoe's mother Samantha Buck
Director Scott McGehee
Director David Siegel
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Other Information

Language: EnglishColourTheatrical distributor: Artificial EyeGuidance: Swearing.Available on: DVD and Blu-rayReleased on: 23 Aug 2013