Mr. Holmes : Laura Linney's accent

Laura Linney's accent

...was not good. Little things like proper accents - which is actually a big deal - throws off the film.

Why such a casting decision was made to cast an American actress in a film about a decidedly English character is baffling. And the accent aside, she is too stiff in the role.

Re: Laura Linney's accent

I agree. It was inconsistent and didn't seem to sound like any particular region. Kind of like Kevin Costner's accent in Robin Hood.

Re: Laura Linney's accent

Dear God, don't remind me... 😂

Re: Laura Linney's accent

What an utterly absurd comparison. It's quite clear that the accent Linney is doing is West Country English (whether she's actually entirely successful I'm not sure after just one viewing). Costner just sounded 100% all-American in Robin Hood. There wasn't even an attempt at an accent.

Re: Laura Linney's accent

Maybe it's the same as casting Rene Zellweger as Bridget Jones.

Someone, at some point, thought she was the best actress for the role.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GAIJ3Rh5Qxs

Re: Laura Linney's accent

But Zellweger - though her accent was ehh - had enough charm to at least make the role funny, like it was supposed to be. Linney in Mr. Holmes, otoh, cringe-worthy.

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I wondered too what Laura Linney was doing in this film. I have to think it's because she's a supremely competent actor. Her West Country accent was understated to nonexistent, but to my American ears it was a creditable attempt. But there are so many wonderful British actresses, why an American was cast is a mystery.

Re: Laura Linney's accent

Since we don't know where exactly the character comes from, it cannot be said that Linney gives us a wrong accent. She delivers what seems to be a reasonable regional accent relevant to the setting. I also thought her performance was very good.

Having said that I DID have a problem with her casting. As a significant American actress, seeing her play a supporting role, absolutely against type, immediately had me focused on her every move and really had me struggling with the suspension of disbelief. That's not a reflection on Linney as an actress. If you cast Daniel Day Lewis as one of Murphy Brown's secretaries the result would have been similar.

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I disagree with you all. I thought Laura Linney did a wonderful job as housekeeper and her accent, while more West Country than Sussex, was very apt. for the part.

I enjoy the roles she plays and think she is very versatile. Loved her in this.




If it harms none, do what thou wilt.

Re: Laura Linney's accent

Didn't you hear her drop her accent numerous times, sometimes sounding even decidedly American? It was painfully noticeable to me.

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YES. Glad it wasn't just me! At first I thought, maybe she's *supposed* to be an American? Then, no, she sounds vaguely English, of some sort... but could never quite place it.

UGH. Love Laura Linney, but not in this.

Coulson has a plan.

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Re: Laura Linney's accent

Agreed. Comments elsewhere are extrmely superflous and off color.

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She's played supporting roles before, in Kinsey, but she somehow worked in that role, more or less. This was just not good. At all.

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You were predisposed to hate her accent and performance because she was American.

Re: Laura Linney's accent

At least reply with something that makes sense...

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I agree with the comments that this was a mis-cast. I definitely didn't care for the accent but too much of her performance reflected the worst American acting traits, aka see me suffer. Yes I can clearly see how miserable you are, but nothing about your performance informs me or makes me interested to know more. I felt she was absolutely MIA in her monologue about losing her husband in WW II. Contrast with McKellen - I see how miserable you are and I am fascinated to know more about why you are.

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charmadu is right about "the worst American acting traits, aka see me suffer".

Particularly near the end when Linney has a typical "Method" meltdown after her son has been stung. About all she didn't do was go all James Dean and curl up in a fetal ball and roll around on the ground.

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The accent was so bad, I couldn't tell what it was supposed to be. In the scene with her son in bed hiding the manuscript, I asked myself if she and her son were Americans who somehow ended up in the UK.

I don't usually care too much about accents done 100% correctly or at least I'm able to ignore a badly prepared accent, but this was just so bad, I could not listen over it.

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How familiar are you with the wide variety of British accents? Because her accent was specific to the coastal region of England where the film takes place.

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If her accent was supposed to be East Sussex (the South East coastal region the film was supposed to be set in) then why was she aiming for the opposite coast no where near there? Her accent (as said by others) was more a West Country (at times slightly Scottish/Irish/American all at the same time). She should have just gone for a generic accent that most Americans go for and it would have been a little closer to her goal. Milo Parker didn't get it right either though, he sounded too public schoolboy for a housekeepers son growing up near Beachy Head, in fact he sounded more posh than Ian McKellen at times.

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Isn't perfectly obvious that it's a Cornish accent? Or are people not in the UK just unfamiliar with that particular accent (or West Country English accents, or British accents other than RP, Cockney/London, or Northern)? I remember the many complaints about the accents in Mr. Turner, for example.

Edit: Apparently, it's meant to be Bristolian. Anyway, ridiculous to say she sounded American. Not at all.

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You answered your own question: not so obvious it was supposed to be Cornish...oh, wait, Bristolian. It was just bad, whatever it was "supposed" to be.

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But those two accents do sound rather alike. Even we British who aren't very familiar with the West Country / south-west region of England can have some difficulty immediately distinguishing which particular west country accent or dialect we're hearing. But I could immediately identify it as basically a West Country English accent - that much is very obvious, whether she successfully pulled off a Bristol accent or not. I thought Cornish (perhaps somewhat ignorantly thinking West Country = Cornish) and I was wrong. But to say that she sounds American, or is comparable to Kevin Costner in Robin Hood (!), is just absurd.

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Most American actors can't do English accents. Does Gillian Anderson count as American? Because her accent is fairly decent. But Linney's was abysmal.

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Yes, my point exactly. The accent was too distracting, pulling me out of the story to wonder the same, "Are they supposed to be Americans..no English...no, ummm??"

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Again I'll say I'm not sure whether Linney succeeded in pulling off the accent she was going for, which apparently was Bristolian, according to this interview: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B07W11cfMvI. I'd have to watch the movie again, paying closer attention. But I must say I'm astonished anyone could even entertain for a second the possibility that she and her son were meant to be American. There was absolutely nothing American-sounding about them at all, at least to my British ears that was nothing like any American accent I've ever heard.

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whether her accent, or stilting awkwardness or what people's expectations of Linney as a well-known American actress were, the fact is that she did not blend/meld into that role, certainly not seamlessly... not the best casting choice.

Re: Laura Linney's accent

+1

Re: Laura Linney's accent

+1, yes

Re: Laura Linney's accent

Who cares if she is American? Brits played the most American of all roles--GIs in Band of Brothers. Roughly half of the ensemble cast was British.

White British and Americans look similar which considering the ancestry of the US should hardly shock us. The fact that Brits play Yanks and Yanks play Brits matters not.

The only relevant concern here is the quality of the acting and in that regard you have a point. Linney sounds too American(specifically Midwestern) as you noted.

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She didn't appear to be straining to do some sort of an English regional accent but she did sound sort of New England-ish at times, then she'd go back to more British sounding. Sometimes when Brits try to do American accents they sound way too nasal or strain on certain "r" sounds, it can be quite painful to listen to (thinking of those Agatha Christie BBC productions),but there are exceptions like the guy who stars in the tv drama "House" I didnt know he was a Brit!

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Nothing like trying to force a disingenuous emotional response to a movie than pretending something like the opinion you think you're supposed to have is objective fact. It sounds like you're trying to justify/deny your own haughtiness by acting like an accent/acting expert.

Re: Laura Linney's accent

Acting wise I thought she did a fine job.

Her accent slips to American many times, though. If the director wanted her for the role, they could've written her as an American who got married to an English soldier.



"It doesnt matter what Bram Stoker has told you... dead people don't come back from their graves"

Re: Laura Linney's accent

you brits are so droll...its post ww2...couldn't there be an american woman still left in britain...i was wondering why linney would want to go there at all and film...if you're concerned about authenticity then direct your comments at the restored steam engines and train cars...or compare ian's nose to basil rathbone's...petty petty petty

Re: Laura Linney's accent

agreed. her acting was wonderful just sounded like an uneven accent.
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