Bright Young Things
- compiled by Jeffrey Overstreet Copyright Christianity Today International
- 2004 1 Jan
The film explores the libertinism of the Jazz Age, following a writer (Stephen Campbell Moore) whose manuscript is seized by customs agents, upsetting his plans for publication, throwing him into financial distress, and threatening his wedding plans. Dan Aykroyd (
Harry Forbes (Catholic News Service) says, "Fry has seen in Waugh's story a searing indictment of a celebrity culture filled with gossip columnists and paparazzi, long before our present-day obsession with such gossip-generating engines as the
John Zmirak (Godspy) writes, "Fry imbues the film with more of a Christian spirit than Waugh's novel ever had. We witness hospital nuns tending the sick, performing the only altruistic acts which appear on screen. In the film (but not the book) suffering and deprivation appear as potentially redemptive—while suicides and nervous breakdowns are depicted as genuinely tragic, not grimly amusing. Even the shallowest characters are presented as more human and forgivable than the pre-Catholic Waugh portrayed them—as if Fry were reading back into this early work the faith which eventually would give its author a glimmer of hope for this fallen world, shining through from the next."
Mainstream critics are divided over the success of the film, but most praise Fry's effort.