Evelyn GoughIn the Picture

St Trinians

Directed by Oliver Parker and Barnaby Thompson

Hands up everyone who remembers the original St Trinian movies based on the cartoons of Ronald Searle? They starred wonderful English actors like Alastair Sim and George Cole along with a cast of naughty schoolgirls running around in stockings and suspenders whacking at anything that moved with their trusty hockey sticks. They just dont make movies like that anymore.

Oh yes they do! This remake of The Belles of St Trinians is sure to garner a whole new generation of fans. What could have been a total disaster is surprisingly amusing and lots of fun and best of all retains the anarchic spirit of the original black and white films.

Replacing the Alastair Sim character as the headmistress Camilla Frinton is equine lookalike Rupert Everett, obviously having an absolute ball impersonating Camilla Parker-Bowles. But not all is well at her school for young ladies. Not only do the girls refuse to act like young ladies, St Trinians is half a million pounds in debt to the bank which is threatening closure and now the new Education Minister, Geoffrey Thwaite (Colin Firth) is determined to follow through with his promise of reforming the worst schools in Britian. Beginning with, you guessed it, St Trinians!

Whats a girl to do? Well, for a start how about a little art theft. As well as being total hotties, the St Trinian girls are a resourceful lot. Led by head girl Kelly (a drop-dead gorgeous Gemma Arterton) and new girl Annabell (Talulah Riley), the students set out to relieve the National Gallery of one of its most famous paintings. Then, with the help of spiv Flash Harry (Russell Brand) they plan to fence it to Camillas slimy brother (also Rupert Everett) who just happens to be Annabells father.

Now what to do about problem number two, Geoffery Thwaite?

This riotous romp has a lot of appeal both for big kids and not-so-big kids and if youre a Colin Firth fan youre in for a real treat. The star proves that he is not only a good sort, hes also a good sport with gag after gag made about his illustrious career. Theres even a homage to the infamous scene from Pride and Prejudice that brought him to the worlds attention. As for Camillas canine companion Mr Darcy (a stellar performance from Dolly the dog), he practically steals the show!!

Men in drag, saucy schoolgirls and an exciting heist! What more could you want?

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