Emily Blunt finds the thrill of revenge in ‘The English’
By now, actress and writer Emily Blunt has been involved in the creation of one action film, two comedy films, a romance and a drama. She’s made more money from the latter than the former two combined, and she’s written and directed more than a few of them.
So, to be clear, the one action film that didn’t make the cut was The English, which Blunt wrote, produced, acted in and edited herself. The film opens in England in the early 1700s and immediately sets up an intriguing scenario for an action film about a family that’s been dispOSSed of by its father – played by Johnny Depp.
“I felt it would be a film about the English aristocracy, but rather than just being a series of historical films in the tradition of Lord of the Rings or the Hunger Games, there was a very particular, particular thing about the narrative that I wanted to explore,” says Blunt, who also directed the film, and who has won an Oscar, two Emmys and an AFI award for her work on the film.
While the film – as much as my review of it – has plenty of problems with its plotting, the way the script takes its cues from historical romance, and the way it veers from one tone to another, it’s a story that’s a bit more complex than the simple “you-lose-everything” scenario Hollywood’s typically used to sell its action movies. It’s also an all-out, all-the-time kind of production that I can easily see working on multiple levels: a classic family drama, a high school movie that’s a movie (it’s almost like a Broadway adaptation), and a revenge action film. And it’s Blunt herself who’s the most enjoyable character on the whole thing: not just one of the biggest action stars in Hollywood, but a real actor who can make anyone fall in love with her. I mean, she’s a writer who’s been involved in the creation of two more films than any other woman in Hollywood.