Film review: Austenland (12A)

Jerusha Hess, 97mins. Starring: Keri Russell

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The Independent Culture

The parasitic industry that has glommed on to the achievements of our greatest novelist plunges further into disgrace. Austenland is a squashed fairycake that not even the staunchest Janeite should touch.

Keri Russell plays Jane, a lonesome thirtysomething whose obsession with her namesake of 200 years ago prompts her to cross the Atlantic for a vacation at the titular English resort.

It's a "fully immersive" experience in which actors dress up as Regency bucks to titillate female holidaymakers besotted with the idea of catching a Mr Darcy.

The contrast between modern banalities and the genteel manners of yesteryear has comic potential, but it would require a subtler talent than writer-director Jerusha Hess's to make it work.