The Guernsey Literary & Potato Peel Pie Society: Lily James leads heart-warming, war-time adaptation of best-selling novel.

When you’re in desperate need of inspiration, something will always come your way, especially when you least expect it. It takes time to perfect an art form, more so when writing a book, nothing will ever come easy. Patience is important and putting yourself in a new environment is more than likely going to open the mind to new possibilities, allowing you to explore new opportunities.

Mary Ann Shaffer’s best selling novel has been adapted by director Mike Newell into a heart-warming, loving feature, featuring a cast of stars such as Lily James, previously seen in the likes of Baby Driver and Darkest Hour and Matthew Goode as seen in The Crown. Being a well-casted film, high expectations were on the horizon along with a well-constructed narrative.

The Guernsey Literary & Potato Peel Pie Society follows Juliet Ashton (Lily James), a young writer with the prospect to become a London literary star. However, with the success of her previous novel, she is struggling to come up with an original story. Until, Dawsey Adams (Michiel Huisman), a farmer on the Isle of Guernsey informs her through a handwritten letter of their society. Admitting to reading and being consumed by Juliet’s work, she travels over to find out more. However, with the war having only just depleted, their past is still their present. Does Juliet find what she is after or does she get more than she bargained for?

Besides the tongue-twister of a title, Lily James excels under Mike Newell’s direction, leading the way into our hearts with her warming, likeable personality along with her beauty. If I had to criticise, her emotional facial expression is one to improve on, looking like she’s struggling to process which emotion to go for, scrunching up into a mess of skin. Otherwise, her performance is majestic and with her experience in other period dramas, it’s done with ease. Michiel Huisman is a dreamboat for every woman. A bearded hunk willing to do whatever it takes, every woman staring into his eyes, in ore of his on-screen presence. Just like Lily James, Matthew Goode is experienced in the art of performing with a silver-spooned accent but still shows his class to perform within such a role, assisting Lily James to create a positive on-screen partnership.

Mike Newell directed a very well articulated narrative but there were a few inconsistencies. Transitioning from each scene was a bit clunky in areas. Some scenes happened suddenly, not allowing us to process the previous action, leaving us confused about where we are going next. Nevertheless, Newell combined the talented class of actors and actresses to make a humorous and inviting piece. The jokes were well timed and hit the funny bone in just the right area.

I managed to see the film early, spontaneously finding a free ticket online, at first I was a bit pessimistic about it, thinking the worst, but I was proved wrong. A very enjoyable, classy film. The cinema nearly filled to the brim with middle-aged personnel, myself being the only person under the age of 30 but if anything it made the film more interactive. Humour tickling all age ranges without leaving a bad taste in the atmosphere. Not something I would usually watch myself or go to the cinema to see but definitely recommend viewing Lily James’ class performance.


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