Written, directed and co-produced by Rupert Everett, who also dons heavy prosthetics to play a disgraced and destitute Oscar Wilde in his final years, this heartfelt passion project boldly follows the literary giant’s riches-to-rags plight as he’s imprisoned for homosexuality and subsequently bullied into exile on mainland Europe. His ill-fated relationship with the flamboyant young Lord Alfred Douglas (Colin Morgan), humiliating encounters with British expats, and the forging of bonds with fellow creatives are all dexterously intertwined with the recitation of Wilde’s short story “The Happy Prince” to two street boys in Paris. Everett, whose own Hollywood career suffered after he came out as gay, has a palpable affection for his muse, and gracefully depicts the playwright as equal parts tormented soul and incurable bon vivant. Infused with empathy, the film emerges as a moving, self-reflexive statement about queerness in show business.
The Happy Prince | Directed by Rupert Everett (Germany, Belgium, UK, Italy 2018) with Rupert Everett, Colin Firth. Starts May 24
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