Robert Viglasky
Leah Greenblatt
April 02, 2015 AT 03:18 PM EDT

Woman in Gold

type
Movie
Current Status
In Season
mpaa
PG-13
runtime
110 minutes
Wide Release Date
04/01/15
performer
Helen Mirren, Ryan Reynolds, Tatiana Maslany
director
Simon Curtis
genre
Drama

We gave it a B-

Even Helen Mirren, the Queen Midas of class acting, can’t fix this well-intentioned miss. The Weinstein Company gives Woman in Gold a prestige-picture veneer, and it’s based on the compelling true story of Maria Altmann, a WWII refugee who fought to win back the titular Gustav Klimt portrait decades after Nazis ransacked her family’s Vienna home. Mirren is formidable as Altmann, now a flinty Los Angeles matron (Orphan Black’s Tatiana Maslany plays her in soft-focus flashbacks). But Ryan Reynolds, as the rookie lawyer who helps her make the case, is miscast in a role as dull as his deglamorized teeth, and the script doesn’t seem to trust that we’ll find a meaningful moment without having our noses rubbed in it. Gold aims to be a Philomena-style story of intergenerational friendship and triumph over tragedy; instead, it ends up nickel-plating a narrative that already shone on its own. B–

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