When Tamara Drewe returns to the rustic village of her youth transformed by a glamorous new career as a columnistand a dazzling new noseshe captures the imaginations of all of the men in town.
© 2010 Ruby Films (Tamara Drewe) Limited, British Broadcasting Corporation, UK Film Council and Notting Hill Films Limited. All Rights Reserved.
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Tomatometer®reviews counted: 24see all Tamara Drewe reviews
Top Critic Reviews
Fresh: It does not insult the intelligence of the audience -- on the contrary, it flatters the viewer's sense of sophistication without being at all esoteric or difficult -- and it is refreshingly candid about sex.
- A.O. Scott, New York Times, Friday, October 8, 2010
Fresh: While no one would celebrate Tamara Drewe as a great movie, it is a reliable dispenser of visual and erotic pleasures.
- Carrie Rickey, Philadelphia Inquirer, Thursday, November 4, 2010
Rotten: There's not even any biting satire on social mores or anything else. The laughs are as broad as the scenery is picturesque. The characters are types but the whole experience is agreeable enough.
- Christy Lemire, Associated Press, Thursday, October 14, 2010
A strange mix of comedy and drama. A cute film with a couple stand out performances. Youngster Jessica Barden plays her character well and its her mis placed young crush now that set into motion events that bring the main character's crushes as a child into a topsy turvy . . i dont know where to go with this. The movie was better than I expected but not amazing. In fact while Gemma Arterton is the title character I was more interested in the characters revolving around her in the little community of Ewedown. Worth the time watching as a change of pace from the standard American dramedies out there.
- jmanard52, Wednesday, July 20, 2011
Tamara Drewe is a highly disappointing film, considering the excellent director (Frears) and stellar English cast. It is neither funny enough to be a rural sex farce (like Bergman's 'Smiles for a Summer Night' or even 'The Big Chill'), nor is it melodramatic, juicy or meaningful enough to be a great, ripping Victorian style yarn. It splits the difference and fails to achieve either goal, and loses the audience early in the movie. Taking a contemporary graphic novel (by Posy Simmonds) inspired by a Thomas Hardy book sounds intriguing, but this entire movie worth much less than each of its excellent component parts. I know the Hardy story (Far From the Madding Crowd) is a far more satisfying experience, and though I haven't read the Posy SImmonds graphic novel, it must surely be more consistent in tone and execution than this hodgepodge. Tamara (Gemma Arterton) is a former ugly duckling with a huge honker who returns to her native village as a successful journalist and is now a swan (with an all correcting nose job) and proceeds to have affairs with three contrasting men, a local married thriller writer (Allam), a rock star (Cooper) and finally, the salt of the earth good man (Evans) who is a down on his luck laborer on her family's property. Arterton is certainly sexy and intelligent, but she does not carry the film with the requisite charisma. She failed to make me empathize with her character's plight, what with owning a stunning country property, being stunning, and having the choice of any man she wants. The three men are all cliches and I didn't care about them much either, since they didn't really come across as three dimensional human being. Much of the drama and conflict of the story is experienced through the writer's long suffering and naive wife, (Tamsin Greig) who is the only character that I cared about, and then only marginally, mostly due to Greig's memorable, often funny and vulnerable performance. There are two teens in love with the rock star, and so they make everyone's live miserable with their meddling, undermining behavior. They are fun, but their meddling is there to just provide convenient and paint by numbers plot complications, which involve, among other things, hacked and fake phone messages (rapidly becoming a tired movie cliche). The film has a macabre and dire ending (true to Hardy) that does not fit with the mostly farcical tone of the rest of the film. Sorry, worth a sleepy plane ride if you can't select the content, but there are so many other superior similar films (Mike Leigh's lighter fare, for example). I know that's not a very big thumbs up at all.
- fb1038944442, Monday, May 7, 2012
Tamara Drewe is a dark satire, a genre that the Brits seem to do oh so very well... most of the time. Here you have a Stephen Frears film that begins with a very nice, off beat in a typically English way, rhythm - full of snide little asides and wink, wink moments as it depicts an out of the way village that is home to a writer's retreat. The concept of the writer's retreat allows the script to dally, spending time observing Nuevo riche mores, a bit of class struggles, and "learned" observations on Thomas Hardy (and if you're saying to yourself, "who is Thomas Hardy?" then this film really isn't your cup of Earl Grey). The story mainly pertains to the group of writers that congregate around the retreat, which is run by Beth Hardiment (Tamen Greig) and financed by her husband Nicholas (Roger Allam), a successful writer of crime novels. Beth is the perfect hostess, always cooking up something wondrous in the kitchen, while hubby is an arrogant boor, confident that his literary success marks him as someone to be listened to. Into their idyllic hamlet steps the titular girl Tamara, who grew up there a member of the landed gentry, but hampered by a keen resemblance to Jimmy Durante. It is now 10 years later and armed with a new proboscis, Tamara returns, obstensively to do a bit of work on the old country manor in preparation to put it up for sale. Of course everyone is smitten by Tamara (Gemma Arterton), and for a time, this near bedroom farce will entertain, especially as it is observed by two precocious girls in their early teens. In the pudding are the Hardiment's handyman, whose family once owned what is now the Drewe manor; and a rock drummer who is the idol of the young girls and seduces Tamara (who is a free-lance writer) by pinning her against the kitchen cabinets and then drumming on all the pots, pans, spice bottles, and whatever else is nearby. The acting throughout is top drawer, from all the already mentioned to Dominic Cooper as the drummer, Luke Evans as the handyman, and Bill Camp as an American scholar trying to overcome writers block and write the definitive treatise on Hardy. The two precocious teens are also a joy, and the first half of the film is snappy and entertaining... but then it sadly becomes all a muddle, with motivations running off the rails in what becomes a shag fest parody that loses its focus. All of the good work in the first half of the film is squandered, especially when you realize that Tamara, who along with the teens instigates the action, isn't really a defined character. You wonder what she's doing and why, and the film woefully neglects to fill in the blanks, leaving you to assume that this is just an ugly duckling tale, and Tamara is taken by her own new sexuality and wants to go out for a test drive or ten. The film could have survived these omissions, but sadly the second half of the film becomes episodic; little vignettes and skits that include a totally unnecessary bit involving the drummer's pet dog. All the momentum seems to slide away, and you begin to not care about anyone other than the American and Beth. I suppose it wasn't easy to juggle the multiple threads with all the characters involved, but Frears I believe could have done a better job, as the handyman, who is in the forefront for the first half of the film, all but disappears until the film's conclusion, where it is really unnecessary for him to make an appearance, other than for appearance sake. This is all unfortunate, for I truly enjoyed the first half of the film - which of course makes its slide into convention and mediocrity in the 2nd half all the more maddening.
- paulsandberg, Monday, December 12, 2011