Stage Beauty
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The true story of two performers whose careers were changed forever by a shift in gender roles on the British stage comes to the screen in this adaptation of the play Compleat Female Stage Beauty by Jeffrey Hatcher. In London, in the latter half of the 17th century, Ned Kynaston (Billy Crudup) is a noted star of the legitimate theater with an unusual specialty -- at a time when it was considered unseemly for women to work as thespians, Kynaston specialized in female roles, and was described by one writer as the most beautiful woman on the London stage. With the help of his faithful dresser,… More

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Rotten Tomatoes Score: 64%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"The attraction to Stage Beauty is that it is just as much a campy comedy as it is an elegant drama."
‑ Kathy Cano Murillo, Arizona Republic
"Even if playwright Jeffrey Hatcher was a bit too tied up in his original play, there's no denying the wonderful wit at its center."
‑ Tom Long, Detroit News
"Danes, as usual, overplays her character's every emotion."
‑ Nick Schager, Lessons of Darkness
"A promisingly playful piece that turns out to be more interested in pleasing the general audience rather than its own heart."
‑ Boyd van Hoeij,
"...the kind of picture that comes with challenges but is not afraid to meet them - or indeed, overcome them - head on."
‑ David Keyes,
"It's a Restoration romantic comedy that struggles with the romance and isn't nearly comic enough."
‑ Roger Moore, Orlando Sentinel
"While Eyre's direction is somewhat squarely theatrical, his sense both of period and the theatrical milieu is powerful."
‑ Geoff Pevere, Toronto Star
""Stage Beauty" has the grace and charm of a great play. It has its acts, its drama and its comedy."
‑ Wesley Lovell, Cinema Sight
"It's Crudup's performance that takes the film from being dull and stage-like to exhilarating and entertaining."
‑ Wilson Morales,
"Handles provocative issues of sexuality and gender with intelligence and grace"
‑ Fr. Chris Carpenter, Catholic Sun
"Has a weird, compelling energy, fueled by a deliciously dynamic cast, a cheerfully bawdy and odd story line and a refreshing, impossible romance."
‑ Connie Ogle, Miami Herald
"Director Eyre brings a brisk energy and knowing eye to the period textures, atmosphere and supporting characters one expects in a drama-comedy unfolding by candlelight on backstages and behind palace walls."
‑ Tom Keogh, Seattle Times
"A vapid confection."
‑ Lawrence Toppman, Charlotte Observer
"This is one of those roles that actors kill for, and Cruddup hits it out of the park."
‑ Robert Roten, Laramie Movie Scope
"Stage Beauty pretends to be a celebration of acting, but in fact it's saying you'll be happiest if you go through life playing the most conventional role you can find."
‑ Paul Matwychuk, Vue Weekly (Edmonton, Canada)
More reviews for Stage Beauty on Rotten Tomatoes

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