What did Maisie know? Parents are idiots

Popped along to the local ‘World of My Front Room’ to watch ‘What Maisie Knew’, courtesy of Curzon’s terrific Home Cinema on demand service. While not the same as a full on theatrical experience, this intimate drama worked superbly well on the small screen.

As Maisie’s hopeless parents, Julianne Moore is fabulous as fading rock chick Susanna, while Steve Coogan moves effortlessly from a Partridge in Norwich to the vain, and rather pathetic Beale in New York. Alexander Skarsgård  and Joanna Vanderham are also on point as Lincoln and Margo, the surrogates upon whom Maisie’s parents rely. In the centre of the emotional maelstrom of a family life disintegrating is the utterly captivating Onata Aprile as Maisie, through whose eyes and around whom we see events unfold. Hers is an emotionally charged but completely natural performance that thankfully betrays not a trace of Hollywood schmaltz. I am staggered that a child so young can deliver such a fearsome piece of work; she really is breathtakingly good. I had high hopes for ‘What Maisie Knew’ and I was not disappointed. This is independent film making of the highest quality that rewards infinitely more than much of the major box office release fodder.

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