Ben Wheatley (2020)

12A Certificate


Our Score
Ben Wheatley returns us to the infamous Manderley in an intriguing marriage of director and material. Better known for boundary pushing fare like Kill List, Wheatley offers his own spin on Daphne du Maurier's classic novel, which was unforgettably brought to the screen by Alfred Hitchcock in 1940. Lily James plays a lady's companion who becomes the wife of wealthy widower Maxim de Winter (Armie Hammer) and is whisked away to the aforementioned estate. There, she encounters Mrs Danvers (a typically formidable Kristin Scott Thomas), Manderley's wicked housekeeper, who is still maniacally in thrall to the previous Mrs de Winter. Grandly shot by Laurie Rose, this is certainly an eye-catching production, featuring lovely and distinctive costume design. James is a convincing lead, quivering in the presence of Danvers before showing some guts, but Hammer is less an enigma than a blank, and Wheatley feels constrained by the source material. Nevertheless, his final-act flourishes add urgency and a welcome touch of feminist zeal.

Cast & Crew

Mrs de Winter Lily James
Maxim de Winter Armie Hammer
Mrs Danvers Kristin Scott Thomas
Beatrice Keeley Hawes
Mrs Van Hopper Ann Dowd
Jack Favell Sam Riley
Frank Crawley Tom Goodman-Hill
Inspector Welch Mark Lewis Jones
Dr Baker Bill Paterson
Granny Jane Lapotaire
Director Ben Wheatley
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Other Information

Language: EnglishColour