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Love & Friendship

✭ ✭ ✭ ✭   Read critic reviews

Ireland, France, Netherlands

Rated PG-13 · 1h 34m

Director Whit Stillman
Starring Kate Beckinsale, Xavier Samuel, Morfydd Clark, Emma Greenwell
Genre Comedy, Drama, Romance
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From Jane Austen’s novella, the beautiful and cunning Lady Susan Vernon visits the estate of her in-laws to wait out colorful rumors of her dalliances and to find husbands for herself and her daughter. Two young men, handsome Reginald DeCourcy and wealthy Sir James Martin, severely complicate her plans.


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Elsa Bauerdick Profile picture for Elsa Bauerdick

This is a wonderfully funny movie about fundamentally unlikeable people. Somehow, despite the fact that sympathizing with our protagonist is difficult at best, Love & Friendship is lighthearted and entertaining. I would wholeheartedly recommend it.

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TheWrap by Alonso Duralde

Kate Beckinsale and Chloe Sevigny spin intrigues, break hearts and flirt with scandal just as effectively in the 1790s setting of “Love” as they did in “Disco,” which took place in the early 1980s.

Screen International by Anthony Kaufman

There is not an ounce of flourish to the filmmaking, but that’s always been the director’s aesthetic. His embellishments come in subtler forms, with witty dialogue and memorable characters—traits that Love and Friendship offers in abundance.

The Film Stage by Daniel Schindel

[Stillman's] dry sense and cutting sensibility are suited to the meaner edge this story has in comparison with the rest of Austen’s oeuvre.

New York Magazine (Vulture) by David Edelstein

Only the generic title disappoints. Leo Rockas, who turned Lady Susan’s epistles into an Austen-esque novel, suggests Flirtation and Forbearance or Coquetry and Caution. But by any title this is a treat.

Time Out by Joshua Rothkopf

The story is a little slight compared to the grand romantic ache of Pride and Prejudice, but Beckinsale and Stillman do their inspiration proud: Finally, a Jane Austen movie that's fresh and deliciously rotten at the same time.

Variety by Justin Chang

[Stillman] takes the inherent sophistication of Austen’s worldview and introduces just the right note of sly, self-deflating mockery.

The Guardian by Nigel M Smith

Beckinsale is a hoot to watch as a character with no redeemable qualities, except for her cunning ability to get what she wants. You can’t help but love Lady Susan because of the evident joy she takes in being so duplicitous. Her energy is infectious.

The Playlist by Noel Murray

Beckinsale’s performance is so funny in fact that it sucks a lot of the air out the room for her co-stars. Whenever she’s in a scene, she delivers so many pithy putdowns per second that it’s hard to pay attention to anyone else. And whenever she’s not around, the movie dims.

The Telegraph by Tim Robey

It’s flat-out hilarious – find me a funnier screen stab at Austen, and I’m tempted to offer your money back personally. Gliding through its compact 92 minutes with alert photography and not a single scene wasted, it’s also Stillman on the form of his life.

The Hollywood Reporter by Todd McCarthy

Cheeky in its approach as well as spirited and good-natured, this enterprising adaptation of the author’s relatively unfamiliar early novella Lady Susan remains buoyant through most of its short running time but lacks the stirring emotional hooks found in the best Austen works, on the page as well as the screen.


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