What Maisie Knew


Action / Drama


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July 24, 2013 at 07:55 PM



Julianne Moore as Susanna
Steve Coogan as Beale
720p 1080p
759.34 MB
23.976 fps
1hr 33 min
P/S 1 / 7
1.45 GB
23.976 fps
1hr 33 min
P/S 1 / 6

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by Nick Keith 8 / 10

She knew who really loved her and who cared for her.

She knew who really loved her and who cared for her...

She also knew that mummy and daddy were too busy arguing to notice that the pizza guy had arrived. "What Maisie Knew" practically opens mid-tirade and Maisie, a wide-eyed six- year old girl has heard it all before, she skips innocently through their art-deco New York apartment, past her none-the-wiser parents, pulls out a fistful of dollar bills from her own piggy-bank and returns to the door to pay for the pizza.

"What Maisie Knew" is a re-visioning of the 19th-Century Henry James novel by the same name. The story follows Maisie, played by the captivating Onata Aprile , caught in the midst of a custody battle between her aging rock star mother Susanna and art-dealer father, Beale.

Susanna intensely played by the always-brilliant Julianne Moore and Beale (Steve Coogan) only unite in their neglect and emotional abandonment of little Maisie, and both of whom are not above using their daughter as a pawn in their war game.

As they battle on with the messy custody arrangements, Beale marries former nanny Margo (Joanna Vanderham), and in retaliation Susanna also remarries, to young bartender Lincoln, (Alexander Skargard).

As Maisie moves between her parents now separate lives, we unearth a natural connection between Maisie and Lincoln. You feel safe when he is around, even though he doesn't know what he is doing half the time and like Maisie, is out of his depth and unsure where he stands in Susanna's life.

Constantly, Susanna relies on Lincoln to pick Maisie up from school, drop her off, and spend time with her and improvise when necessary.  But as the affectionate bond between her new husband and her daughter grows, Susanna becomes jealous of the relationship to the point of enforcing to Lincoln "you don't get a bonus for making her like you".

"You don't deserve her," Lincoln lashes out as Susanna breaks up with him, expressing exactly what the viewer has been thinking. But as another relationship in Maisie's life ends, it's her resilience that keeps us captivated and in awe of such a brave girl.

The story is told from Maisie's perspective including many shots even captured from Maisie's eye level so we get a fresh look at an unoriginal story. Instead of finding out why a parent leaves her at school, we just see how the child remembers being left alone. Instead of knowing what the parents are fighting about, we see how it impacts the child and her memories of it.

"What Masie knew" is a bleak film but hopeful, it demonstrates that innocence is not something to be wasted and used but cherished and protected. What Masie knew is  to trust the people who actually take care of her - never voicing an allegiance against anyone but accepting love when it's offered

Reviewed by diarmidbt 9 / 10

Small and Intense

I've read five previously posted reviews of this film and see no reason to repeat what they've already said. I agree, for the most part, with the positive ones. And I suspect the negative ones were written by people whose established taste in movies should have steered them away from seeing this one in the first place.

What I'll add is, I guess, a mostly personal perspective. I've found that I am lately much more drawn to smaller, more deeply felt movies than to bigger, slicker, higher-production-value ones. To "What Maisie Knew," for example, than to "The Great Gatsby." Even though both source novels share a similar interior aesthetic, the treatment in the former stays inside the characters, where James focused the original (thus causing one of the previous reviewers' comments to the effect that "nothing happens" in the movie), while the latter (possibly because of Luhrmann's well-established directorial predilections)stays resolutely focused on the exterior spectacle and barely skims the surface of Fitzgerald's deeply rendered characterizations.

If you like smaller, more closely observed and deeply felt films, you'll like this one.

Reviewed by Michael_Elliott 5 / 10

Unique Gem With Some of the Best Performances of the Year

What Maisie Knew (2012)

*** 1/2 (out of 4)

Excellent updating of the Henry James story about a divorcing couple (Julianne Moore, Steve Coogan) and the impact that their behavior has on their young daughter Maisie (Onata Aprile) as well as the new step parents (Alexander Skarsgard, Joanna Vanderham). WHAT MAISIE KNEW isn't going to appeal to a mass audience but it's certainly a terrific little gem from directors Scott McGehee and David Siegel. What I enjoyed the most was the unique way it told the story. We never get the "full" story of everything going on but instead we get the bits and pieces that a child would remember about something. Instead of finding out why a parent leaves her at school, we just see how the child remembers being left alone. Instead of knowing what the parents are fighting about, we see how it impacts the child and her memories of it. This is a very unique way to tell the story and it gives a touch of freshness to a storyline (divorce) that we've seen before. It also doesn't hurt that the film doesn't shy away from some rather ugly behavior from the parents and especially the Moore character. To say she's an unworthy mother would be an understatement but I appreciate the film playing things straight and not ever trying to make something cute. It also doesn't hurt that we get some of the best performances that you're going to see all year with Moore doing an excellent job in her role as the busy mother who doesn't have enough time for her daughter. This is a rather ugly role so it was brave for the actress to take it on. The same with Coogan who also plays a jerk and delivers with some strong work. Both Skarsgard and Vanderham really steal the film in the roles of the step parents who find themselves being forced to deal with something they never expected. Both of them should be remembered at Oscar time but we'll see how that goes. The same is true for Aprile who doesn't get too much dialogue but we constantly see her reactions to the things going on around here. This is such an excellent and quiet performance and something you'd see in a silent movie. WHAT MAISIE KNEW is about a pretty ugly subject matter but it's a fascinating look at it for those who enjoy great performances and a unique story.

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