• R, 1 hr. 45 min.
  • Drama, Comedy
  • Directed By:
    Stephen Fry
    In Theaters:
    Aug 20, 2003 Wide
    On DVD:
    Feb 8, 2005
  • ThinkFilm

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Bright Young Things Reviews

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April 28, 2014
Written and directed by Stephen Fry, (his directorial debut), adapted from Evelyn Waugh's 1930 novel Vile Bodies. It is meant to provide a social commentary of bohemian life in the 1930's, and it's a bubbly and likeable film, but not all of it works, despite the best efforts of the all star cast, and it does depict one party too many, by which point it does get a bit tedious and repetitive. Aspiring novelist Adam Fenwick-Symes (Stephen Campbell Moore) works for tabloid newspaper magnate Lord Monomark (Dan Aykroyd), but he's found himself in a bit of a financial trouble which means he's had to postpone his wedding to Nina Blount (Emily Mortimer). He wins 1000 after a game with Ginger Littlejohn (David Tennant), which a drunken Major (Jim Broadbent) tells Adam to put on a horse that won't win, which it does, to the tune of 33,000. But it takes Adam over a decade to get his money back from the Major, by which time, Adam is introduced to wild parties by Simon Balcairn (James McAvoy), a tabloid journalist who sneaks into parties. It's a perfect fit for Fry's brand of wit, and he makes a decent job of his first time out as a directed, calling in favours from his friends, including John Mills, who does cocaine. Razz But the film lurches between zany wit and dark drama too much, which does spoil it slightly, despite all good intentions.
April 14, 2014
Does a very good job of capturing the cynical, satirical tone of Waugh's novel Vile Bodies and brings his characters to life, though the ending was a bit more somber and serious than Waugh's hilariously biting conclusion.
January 17, 2011
Works better moment to moment then as a whole. Yet still has enough actors you know having fun and clever insights into the sadness of the characters underneath the parties and their "brilliance". Falters when it goes to WWII to fill in for character development.
April 28, 2013
It may not be the best satire I have seen, but it accomplishes what it sets out to do.
April 24, 2013
little bit weird in places.. little bit disfunctional in places.. but all together pretty watchable
January 27, 2013
Few of the major reviewers really liked this movie - but it definitely appealled to me. Stephen Fry has always been a bit of a favourite and maybe I actually wish I was a 'Bright Young Thing' after all.
December 7, 2012
Want to see it! Will have to take into account!
August 2, 2012
At a glance, Stephen Fry's adaptation of Evelyn Waugh's "Vile Bodies" is a fun and frivolous film stocked with fun and frivolous characters -- a picture that cheerfully recounts the daily life of Britain's pleasure-seeking smart set in the 1930s. Bright Young Things is a frenetic and glittering and witty and sly picture, with a cast so illustrious that it can satisfy even the most desperate need for a Brit fix, and this is what most reviewers will choose to focus on. And yet, it would be a dreadful mistake to judge this picture on its appearances, and the appearances of the bright young people on whom it centres. True, the main characters are one-note in their constant pursuit of new thrills and sensations. But theirs is a life caught up in the desperate pursuit for pleasure that defined Europe's inter-war generation -- a life that was envied from afar but should have been pitied up close -- and it is in portraying the compulsive nature of this decadence that Bright Young Things truly shines. Fry's film is not a cheap pastiche of famous British actors, thrown together for the sake of indulging in the aesthetic pleasures of the 1930s and lusting after the care-free rambunctiousness of high society. It is a sympathetic portrayal of the quiet anxiety that plagued the era and, most especially, those youth so newly acquainted with the realities of life that they could only think to outrun their dire situation as long as possible. The picture's most powerful moment is when all of its facades start to fall (also a quiet affair, and one easily missed). I will never forget the quiet desperation that was written on each and every one of those once-bright young faces. A+ to all involved; I would and have re-watched this film many times.
May 20, 2012
E ca un fel de film de introducere pentru o tona de actori englezi si acum destul de bine cunoscuti
May 15, 2012
Didn't have the same spark as the novel. Lackluster...the characters seemed tortured by the storyline, not their lives.
RobotSmile
March 30, 2012
A sheet of blank paper has more depth than this movie. It was stupid and annoying and a huge waste of some of Britain's best actors. The couple at the center of this story were uncharismatic idiots. Might work as a satire, if it had been funny, but it's a soulless, truly vapid movie where the sets and costumes is the only thing worth watching.
March 14, 2012
Stephen Fry's directing debut is brilliant. The cast are totally amazing, and the colour scgemes and storyline beautiful. Highly recommended!
David S

Super Reviewer

March 13, 2012
A nicely directed first feature from Fry (although you suspect he's thrown a lot of unneccesary clutter in there too) but your enjoyment of the film will depend on how much you can actually stand the characters. I admired the performances but didn't take to any of them and therefore found the whole thing a bit of a frothy mix rather than a substantial work.
March 5, 2012
I didn't like this film when I first saw it - it bears repeated viewing.,  At first, I thought the characters horrid and vapid - and I suppose that was the point, but as I got to "know" them, I found that they were real people, with heart.,  Well. Most of them!, 

For example, at first I thought Ginger (Eddie) Littlejohn was an unmitigated cad, but on repeated viewing it seems that Adam is, in a way, worse, and he even admits it.

The costumes and settings are lovely and there are some real laugh-out-loud moments, as well as poignancy.
February 2, 2012
Stephen Fry's surreal look at aristorcratic youth in 1930s Britian through the eys of someone who can blend into their world has us wondering how far would you go to blend in and please the person you love
January 28, 2012
A spectacular cast: Jim Broadbent, Julia Mackenzie, Fenella Woolgar (now, there's a name for you) and, of course, Emily Mortimer and Peter O'Toole. Oh, and David Tennant, Stockard Channing, and Professor Umbridge (aka Imelda Staunton).
January 21, 2012
cant believe i have 2 redo these-grrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr
incz
August 28, 2011
little bit weird in places.. little bit disfunctional in places.. but all together pretty watchable
JackieeCx
March 20, 2011
"Bright, young people. That's what they call you. Well, I guess one of out three isn't bad."
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