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An Ideal Husband

When a member of Parliament (Jeremy Northam) learns that his career and marriage will suffer scandal unless he submits to a blackmailer (Julianne Moore), he turns his fate over to lifelong bachelor Lord Goring (Rupert Everett), "the idlest man in London." Brimming with witticisms and great performances (including those from Cate Blanchett and Minnie Driver), this big-screen adaptation of Oscar Wilde's stage play sparkles like vintage champagne.
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Netflix Rating: 3.5
Rotten Tomatoes® Scores
85%  
70%
 
Movie Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes®

See all An Ideal Husband Reviews

 
An enjoyable, minor, lustrously shot revamping of Oscar Wilde's play about the perpetually interlocked manners of love and deception.
Owen Gleiberman, Entertainment Weekly  full review
 
Smooth-flowing direction, a shrewdly pruned script and a top-flight ensemble cast that visibly relishes both the dialogue and one another's perfs make this a tony item for upscale, mature audiences.
Derek Elley, Variety  full review
 
Parker has made a sensible cinematic translation of Wilde's play, intercutting scenes which would have been played consecutively on the stage.
Jeff Millar, Houston Chronicle  full review
 
[I]t's likely that Mr. Wilde, who once wrote, 'A poet can survive anything but a misprint,' would have been less than thrilled with the result.
Globe and Mail, Globe and Mail  full review
 
Wilde was always about lots more than witty repartee, and as sparkling as his play is as drawing-room comedy, it reveals his concern with the timeless values of unselfish love and forgiveness.
Kevin Thomas, Los Angeles Times  full review
 
[T]his Husband plods and ambles and bears the burden of a soundtrack that resembles a wimpy meditation tape.
Edward Guthmann, San Francisco Chronicle  full review
 
Much of the four acts of An Ideal Husband, a serious comedy, is constructed out of flip one-liners, most of which remain, though Parker has added a few, all unworthy of the master.
Jonathan Rosenbaum, Chicago Reader  full review
 
An irresistible concoction of brilliant dialogue, sumptuous set design, top-notch acting, and a plot littered with Machiavellian twists.
James Berardinelli, ReelViews  full review
 
An Ideal Husband works because Wilde created an expert mechanism (kind of slow-motion serious screwball comedy) for manipulating the plot and characters.
Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times  full review
 
Parker, who himself adapted Wilde's play for the movie, takes what to purists may be an unforgivable number of liberties with the story, fleshing out the plot and even adding dialogue.
Stephanie Zacharek, Salon.com  full review
 
[The] film is hardly memorable, but it's amusing enough for two hours, and it never panders or cloys.
Amy Taubin, Village Voice  full review
 
In adapting the play, Mr. Parker has streamlined and rewritten Wilde's dialogue, keeping some (but not all) of Wilde's biting epigrams and scraping off a lot (perhaps too much) of the Victorian crust.
Stephen Holden, New York Times  full review
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