Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

A Dud Tale of American Literature's Golden Age and a Waste of Great British Acting Talent

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

A Dud Tale of American Literature's Golden Age and a Waste of Great British Acting Talent

Article excerpt

Byline: DAVID SEXTON

BERLIN FILM FESTIVAL GENIUS DAVID SEXTON MICHAEL GRANDAGE, acclaimed artistic director of the Donmar for 10 years, has made his first film, going straight into competition at Berlin. Genius is about the relationship between Maxwell Perkins, the gifted editor who discovered Ernest Hemingway and F Scott Fitzgerald, and his most wayward protege, the torrential novelist Thomas Wolfe, who wrote the saga Look Homeward, Angel, a huge success in its day.

Grandage has assembled a starry but peculiarly un-American cast with many wavering accents. Always a superior gentleman, Colin Firth plays Perkins as having a soft spot for Wolfe as the son he never had. Throughout the entire film he wears a hat, indoors and out, taking it off only at the end (spoiler!) to show he's been deeply moved.

Dominic West appears briefly as Hemingway and Guy Pearce for a little longer as Fitzgerald, tormented by his inability to write any more -- whereas Wolfe can't stop the words pouring forth. …

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