Blunt Burnishes Lackluster Young Victoria
Actress carries a film that does not depart from genre conventions
By Harry Kimball,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 18, 2009 11:43 AM CST

(Newser) – Whether they find the film delightful costumed fluff or a dreary museum piece, most critics agree Emily Blunt is lovely as The Young Victoria. Some takes:

  • "Winningly played" by Blunt, Keith Phipps writes for the Onion AV Club, Victoria is "a bright, vivacious, willful, and sometimes rash monarch-in-the-making," a welcome antidote to the familiar dour characterizations of the monarch.

  • The film has its ups and downs, says Manohla Dargis of the New York Times. "There is limited entertainment in watching even an appealing actress wander forlornly, talking to herself and the dog," but the romance is a delight. "Albert may never rip Victoria’s bodice, but he does eventually loosen it, to her delight and ours."
  • Yuck, writes David Edwards in the Daily Mirror. "Yet another queasy entry into the ever-growing Queensploitation genre" about the "depressingly familiar battle between duty and love."
  • "The movie, like the age that it depicts, stands or falls on the woman at its core," and Blunt strikes New Yorker critic Anthony Lane as "the real deal." For her sake, he writes, "one prays that films more liberating than this, and more likely to feed Blunt’s appetites, will come her way."