St Trinians (12A)

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The ViewLondon Review

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Review byMatthew Turner21/12/2007

Three out of Five stars
Running time: 101 mins

Surprisingly enjoyable comedy with strong comic performances, lively direction and several decent gags.

What's it all about?
Rupert Everett (in full Camilla Parker-Bowles drag) stars as Camilla Frinton, headmistress of the infamous St Trinian's school for girls, which is facing two distinct problems: first, the bank is threatening St Trinian's with closure and second, the new Education Minister, Geoffrey Thwaite (Colin Firth) is determined to bring discipline and order to the anarchic school.

Fortunately, the resourceful pupils have a plan to save the school. Under the influence of cool head girl Kelly (Gemma Arterton) and new girl Annabelle (Talulah Riley), the girls (including Lily Cole, Tamsin Egerton and Juno Temple) come up with a plan to steal a famous painting and fence it to Camilla's ne'er-do-well brother (also Rupert Everett) with the assistance of charming spiv Flash Harry (Russell Brand).

The Good
Rupert Everett is extremely funny as Camilla and his romantic scenes with a remarkably game Colin Firth (there are countless jokes about Firth's career and he even reprises the Mr Darcy wet shirt shot) are priceless. There's also strong comic support from Russell Brand and Jodie Whittaker (as the dozy school secretary), while Talulah Riley and Gemma Arterton are both superb as the two lead girls.

Parker and Thompson maintain a lively directing style and a high gag rate, ensuring that even if one joke falls flat, there's another one right behind it. They've also been surprisingly successful in updating the franchise, with cliques consisting of Emos, Chavs and Geeks, as well as a crowd-pleasing cameo by Girls Aloud in school uniforms.

The Bad
The strangest thing about the film is how tame it all is, despite a couple of risque jokes and drug references – there's not a hint of sex and the girls only make drugs rather than taking them.

Worth seeing?
In short, St Trinians is surprisingly good fun and certainly not the disaster it could have been (think Spice World). Worth seeing.

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Content updated: 21/04/2019 13:26

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