Review: Willy convinces his wife Colette to write novels under his name. They have huge success but Colette wants to make her talents known. She soon fights over creative ownership and gender roles drives her to overcome societal constraints, revolutionising literature, fashion and also sexual expression.
Director: Wash Westmoreland
Actors: Keira Knightley, Fiona Shaw, Dominic West, Robert Pugh, Sloan Thompson, Arabella Weir, Mate Haumann, Ray Panthaki, Al Weaver, Dickie Beau, Janine Harouni, Jake Graf, Rebecca Root, Julian Wadham, Eleanor Tomlinson, Alexandra Szucs, Aiysha Hart, Denise Gough, Johnny K. Palmer, Shannon Tarbet, Dorcas Coppin, Roderick Hill, Peter Schueller and Caroline Boulton
Year: 2018
Genre: Biography, Drama and History
Conclusion: 4/5
This story is very similar to The Wife (2017) in which it was the wife who wrote the novels but it was the husband who took all the credit. Also the film Mary Shelley (2017) is based on the same subject. Even though you could say that this film is a French film it is actually filmed in parts of Hungary and the U.K. Great cast and fantastic performances. I have to say that this is one of Kiera Knightley’s best performances. Dominic West is such a strong actor and one you can’t take your eyes off. The costumes for that era were exceptional and I thought they got the detail just right. At this era in France it was illegal for women to wear men’s clothing, hence the scandal over Colette’s choice to begin wearing trousers. Also homosexuality itself was legal, and had been since 1791. I also actually believed in the characters and what they were all going through. Wash Westmoreland began working on Colette nearly 20 years ago with Richard Glatzer. After Richard Glatzer died in 2015, Westmoreland continued work on the script with Rebecca Lenkiewicz, the British playwright. Other impressive screenwriting of Rebecca Lenkiewicz credits include Pawel Pawlikowski’s Ida (2013) and Sebastián Lelio’s Disobedience (2017). Westmoreland had originally written the script way back in 2001, but could not get the film made at that time and has had to wait until now. I have not seen any other work by Wash Westmormand but thoroughly enjoyed this film.  


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