An Ideal Husband (1999)



Critic Consensus: Brevity is the soul of wit, eh? This adaptation gets to the nitty gritty of Wilde's stage piece and plays on eternal human foibles.

Movie Info

In a moment of youthful indiscretion, Sir Robert Chiltern provided an Austrian baron with secret Foreign Office information. As payment he received the money that became the basis of his fortune and of his splendid, otherwise unimpeachable government career. Years later, he is blackmailed by a mysterious woman who also happens to be an acquaintance of his wife. Seeking the advice of his best friend, Sir Chiltern is told to confess everything to his wife and seek her support, but he refuses to … More

Rating: PG-13 (for brief sensuality/nudity)
Genre: Comedy
Directed By:
Written By: Oliver Parker
In Theaters:
On DVD: Jan 18, 2000
Miramax Films


as Arthur Goring

as Mrs. Cheveley

as Sir Robert Chiltern

as Lord Caversham

as Phipps

as Tommy Trafford

as Lady Markby

as Vicounte de Nanjac

as Miss Danvers

as Lady Basildon

as Cecily

as Algernon

as Lady Bracknell

as Miss Prism

as Canon Chasuble

as Oscar Wilde

as Bunbury

as Brackpool

as Burlington

as Baron Arnheim

as Young Mother

as M.P. No 1

as Sir Hugo Danforth

as M.P. No 2

as The Speaker
Show More Cast

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Critic Reviews for An Ideal Husband

All Critics (66) | Top Critics (16)

The bright, crisp design, Wilde's arch eloquence and a classy company help to camouflage the shortcomings.

Full Review… | March 2, 2011
Time Out
Top Critic

An enjoyable, minor, lustrously shot revamping of Oscar Wilde's play about the perpetually interlocked manners of love and deception.

Full Review… | July 7, 2010
Entertainment Weekly
Top Critic

Smooth-flowing direction, a shrewdly pruned script and a top-flight ensemble cast that visibly relishes both the dialogue and one another's perfs make this a tony item for upscale, mature audiences.

Full Review… | June 19, 2008
Top Critic

Parker has made a sensible cinematic translation of Wilde's play, intercutting scenes which would have been played consecutively on the stage.

Full Review… | July 21, 2005
Houston Chronicle
Top Critic

[I]t's likely that Mr. Wilde, who once wrote, 'A poet can survive anything but a misprint,' would have been less than thrilled with the result.

Full Review… | March 19, 2002
Globe and Mail
Top Critic

Wilde was always about lots more than witty repartee, and as sparkling as his play is as drawing-room comedy, it reveals his concern with the timeless values of unselfish love and forgiveness.

Full Review… | February 14, 2001
Los Angeles Times
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for An Ideal Husband

Comedy about a 19th C. MP whose marriage comes under threat by blackmail

Ross Collins

Super Reviewer


Great cast. Good plot.

Candy Rose

Super Reviewer

everyone is good but Rupert Everett is brilliant!

jay nixon

Super Reviewer

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