A Good Woman - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

A Good Woman Reviews

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Super Reviewer
July 6, 2012
A woman suspects her husband of infidelity when an older woman who has a sullied reputation comes to town.
Why do modern directors and writers think they are smarter than some of the best writers in the English language? In this case, Oscar Wilde's great play Lady Windemere's Fan gets distorted, the worst sin coming in the third act of the film. In addition to alterations in the plot, writer Howard Himelstein interjects some of Wilde's random witticisms into the script; for example, there is little reason why America being the only country to go from barbarism to decadence without civilization in between should be included in the film. It's funny, of course, but out of place.
Helen Hunt does not deliver a strong performance. I often thought that Wilde's sophisticated dialogue puts Hunt out of her element, and Scarlett Johannson isn't much better. Obviously the Britons, Tom Wilkinson and Stephen Campbell Moore aren't similarly affected.
Overall, the source material is strong, but the film isn't.
Super Reviewer
March 6, 2012
What a strange title... almost all the women pissed me off in this movie. I take that back; all the characters pissed me off. There is so much deceit, cheating, and dishonesty going about this plot that we, as the audience, don't know who to root for. There's a group that are the gossipers, Helen Hunt's the seductress, Scarlett Johansson wavers between loyalty and betrayal, and worst of all, Stephen Campbell Moore tries his hardest to break the bond of marriage to satiate his want to sleep with a hot girl. Yeah, you heard me; Campbell Moore says that he does it for the sake of "love" but I call it a booty call, and I make that assumption based on his annoying ass character's mannerisms and actions. What particularly annoyed me the most was how almost everyone within this movie was NOT genuine until the movie decides to wrap everything up with a happy, feel-good ending.

"A Good Woman" is put together sloppily with very generic techniques that add nothing to the subpar plot with some of the most annoying side characters I've seen in a very long time. This movie is not worth a watch.
Super Reviewer
½ October 8, 2007
its an alright film
Super Reviewer
August 10, 2008
The tone of this adaptation is sooo serious and strips away much of Oscar Wilde's bombastic wit. Stephen Campbell Moore is my new It Guy.
Super Reviewer
June 27, 2013
Based on a play by Oscar Wilde, A Good Woman is a satirical comedy set in the 1930s. The story follows a seductress, who preys upon rich men, as she heads for the coast of Italy in search of new prospects. The film stars Helen Hunt, Scarlett Johansson, and Tom Wilkinson, who all give strong performances. The costumes and set designs are also quite impressive, and have an authentic feel to them. However, the writing is dialog heavy, and it interferes with the storytelling. While the film has some problems, A Good Woman is an entertaining film with a smart sense of humor.
Super Reviewer
April 2, 2009
Not as literary minded as some who may have previously reviewed this, I will not be comparing this to the Oscar Wilde original on which it was based. It is similar in theme, although with a different moral, to the recent film, Priceless. While this viewer saw Wilde's subtle hand behind the script, this film is able to stand on its own. I found it to be quite annoying as various characters made serious judgements and accusations based on little knowledge and a whole lot of imagination. Newly married Meg Windemere (Scarlett Johansson) appears ready to kick her husnband (Stephen Campbell Moore) to the curb for suppposed indescretions with Mrs. Erlynne (Helen Hunt) a notorious gold-digger who has worn out her welcome in other locales. I had to stop and start several times, just to let my frustrations subside. However, staying to the end proved quite rewarding, as all of the various fractures and threads are brought to a most satifying conclusion. As a commentary on contemporary mores it seems a little dated, but was quite an entertaining confection. Tom Wilkinson played Tuppy as a slightly jaded man who nevertheless decided to give love another go with Mrs. Erlynne. Conversation at a party: "Would she even look at you if you were poor?" "Would I even look at her if she were ugly? Fair exchange." Lovely costumes, beautiful sets, two gorgeous women, a terrific supporting cast, and witty dialogue, this one just about had it all.
Super Reviewer
½ April 6, 2007
[font=Century Gothic]In "A Good Woman", it is 1930 when flat broke, professional mistress Stella Erlynne(Helen Hunt) leaves New York for the sunnier climes of Italy where she hopes to land another wealthy benefactor in a land teeming with them. Her prime target is the young Robert Windermere(Mark Umbers), married about a year to Meg(Scarlett Johansson).[/font]
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[font=Century Gothic]"A Good Woman" is a curiously lifeless adaptation of Oscar Wilde's "Lady Windermere's Fan" that really only has Wilde's patented bon mots and Tom Wilkinson's charming performance going for it. The blame lies mostly in the horrendous miscasting of Helen Hunt who is simply dreadful and has always had the sex appeal of a rotten banana.(So, it's not simply her age. After all, Helen Mirren still has it.)[/font]
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[font=Century Gothic]What the movie seeks to convey is the lack of opportunities for a woman excommunicated from society in that day and age and who is forced to live on the margins.(But Mrs. Erlynne's profligate spending does not help her cause.) And it also serves as a commentary on society's inability to mind its own business.[/font]
Super Reviewer
September 1, 2013
When it comes to adapting the work of such a famous writer like Oscar Wilde, almost any director will fall into some difficulties in portraying such vivid storytelling, especially in re-envisioning the wildly popular play "A Good Woman". Mike Barker's adaptation is both wonderfully cast and wrongfully cast in many instances, as is it often acceptably portrayed and mistakenly portrayed on several occasions. Helen Hunt as Mrs. Erlynne tends to feel a bit miscast. While Hunt is normally a strong and insightful actress, her performance here is muddled, never possessing the femme fatale factor needed to carry her sexuality to the level it needs to be. Instead, she often appears unsure of herself, a choice she makes, but ultimately squanders any sexual undertones surrounding her role. On the other hand, Tom Wilkinson is expertly cast as Tuppy, who embodies his prestige with a vigor all his own, regularly stealing the show and becoming the highlight of the last half of the film. Scarlett Johansson, neither strongly nor badly casted, does carry the naivety needed to successfully delineate the role of Meg and even surprises on occasion. If you've never experienced Wilde's play, as I had not, the film does well to hide many of the story's secrets and produces a mix between great revelations and poor conclusions. Overall, "A Good Woman" rides the borderline between a good adaptation and a misguided one, presenting Wilkinson and Johansson in enough of a favorable light to make the film worth it, but with no expectations of being a favorite.
Super Reviewer
May 15, 2010
I sat down to watch this movie because it was running on tv and I actually enjoyed it very much. Helen Hunt is a gold digger who has got a lot of money from New York husbands and this has damaged her reputation. She then travels to Italy to seek fresh prospects and the gossip soon spreads here too. Here she meets this newlywed US financier with a young and fragile wife. This movie very much illustrates Oscar Wilde's style and I thought it was great. Great acting and a great plot.
Super Reviewer
½ August 12, 2006
Trying to be Noel Coward as well as Oscar Wilde and failing miserably. It's diverting, I'll give it that.
Super Reviewer
½ April 11, 2007
Weak direction and poor casting choices make this screen adaptation of an Oscar Wilde play dull and completely forgettable. Helen Hunt, Mark Umbers and Scarlett Johansson take excellent dialog and give it the emotional impact one would expect from a department store mannequin. Kudos go to Tom Wilkinson for his excellent performance, as well as the costuming and set designers for their contributions to this snoozer of a film.
June 11, 2014
This was a pretty good movie. The supporting cast was great. They spent the whole movie gossiping and they had the best lines in the movie.
November 4, 2012
The plot is lacking, and the best way I can think to describe this movie is "dreary." But the acting is solid, and there's a certain amount of crassness that makes it just interesting enough to keep watching. I'm really not sure why, but I enjoyed this.
½ May 29, 2011
I know it isn't PC to say this, I didn't find Helen Hunt Pretty enough to be believable in this Role, although see acted the Corset out of It!!! A Favorite Oscar Wilde Play for me, so naturally I loved the Movie & Helen Hunt won me over as this Scheming Woman who has Worn out her Welcome in New York Social Society ,so inserts herself into the Elite 1930's Social Society off the Amalfi Coast hoping to Beg, Borrow, or Steal a Husband of Stature.Her Manner of Dress & Behavior appears more Scandalous than it actually is when her Secret is Reveled.A Juicy Period Piece with a Twist ,Oscar Wilde Style
January 2, 2008
I loved Oscar Wilde's "The Importance of Being Earnest," so I rented this adorable flick. Scarlett Johannson is majestic, and the plot--let's just say I did NOT see that coming!
½ March 31, 2008
Really not a bad movie, but it doesn't do anything that well either. My guess is that reading the original by Oscar Wilde would be much better.
February 23, 2008
Great acting by Helen Hunt. Very detail description of high class society in the 30s. The story is written in such a way which makes you change your view on characters as it developes.
½ January 29, 2008
Hunt & Johansson & Wilkinson were fantastic... Hunt was great as the bold daring woman that lived off the rich men...
August 22, 2007
An interesting period piece, not for eveyone, The Great Gatsby meets Dangerous Liasons minus the sex
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