Set in the dazzling Jazz Age of 1922, The Chaperone is an exquisite film on the early life
of silent movie screen star Louise Brooks (Haley Lu Richardson).
After being selected into the prestigious modern dance school Denishawn, 15 year old
Louise heads from Wichita, Kansas to New York City in the company of her matronly
chaperone, Norma (Elizabeth McGovern).Haley Lu Richardson’s portrayal of the young Brooks shows a wilful, free spirit destined for stardom.
While Brooks proves her worth to the dance company her chaperone Norma is
on her own quest to find her identity and family roots from the Catholic orphanage where she had lived as a young child.
Delicately exploring the expectations and morals of the day, the film follows the parallel
story of these two women with sensitivity, wit and humour as they each enter a new phase in their lives and rightly claim their future.
Directed by Michael Engler and screenplay by Julian Fellowes (Downton Abby) the film is
destined to be popular with audiences.
The films costumes are meticulously researched and true to the period and lovers of fashion will not be disappointed.
There are some exquisite dance scenes with Brooks and her choreographer teacher, Ted Shawn (Robert Fairchild from New York City Ballet).
Overall the film is a wonderful tribute to Brooks who led a complex life and went on to
become a celebrated screen star of the silent movie era, and, eventually a writer in her
Words by Elizabeth Lamont
Details: The Chaperone| running time 103mins | now playing in cinemas