Amma Asante (2013)

12A Certificate


Our Score
It's hard to imagine the true story of Britain's first mixed-race aristocrat being told more elegantly than in this warm and often very funny period piece, which brings a subtle political gravitas to its central fairy-tale romance. The title character, Dido Belle (Gugu Mbatha-Raw), is the illegitimate child of a slave and a nobleman, and is fetched from the slums of Bristol docks by her father in the film's opening moments. He recognises Dido as his heir, and she is taken to live with her great uncle, Lord Mansfield (Tom Wilkinson), at London's Kenwood House, where she is introduced to a life of luxury. When she comes of age, however, Dido is alerted to the injustices of the world by her guardian's apprentice, the serious but charismatic law student John Davinier (Sam Reid). The horror of slavery is addressed, as are many other issues, but Belle does so from a place of hope and love, expanding the Georgian world of Jane Austen while delivering all the wit and spectacle of top-flight costume drama.


Premiere. The illegitimate mixed-race daughter of a Royal Navy admiral is raised in the household of her great uncle, but is never entirely accepted in Georgian British society. She falls in love with an idealistic lawyer, and together they campaign against the slave trade. Fact-based period drama, starring Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Tom Wilkinson and Emily Watson.

Cast & Crew

Dido Elizabeth Belle Gugu Mbatha-Raw
Lord Mansfield Tom Wilkinson
John Davinier Sam Reid
Lady Elizabeth Murray Sarah Gadon
Lady Mary Murray Penelope Wilton
Lady Ashford Miranda Richardson
James Ashford Tom Felton
Captain Sir John Lindsay Matthew Goode
Lady Mansfield Emily Watson
Lord Ashford Alex Jennings
Director Amma Asante
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Other Information

Language: EnglishColourTheatrical distributor: 20th Century FoxGuidance: Some violence.Available on: DVD and Blu-rayReleased on: 13 Jun 2014