AceShowbiz - "Don't Worry Darling" doesn't receive enough love following its premiere at the Venice Film Festival. The movie, which marks Olivia Wilde's second directorial feature, has been blasted by critics amid rumored feud with her star Florence Pugh.
After the psychological thriller was screened on Monday, September 5, the early reviews are in and mostly have been negative. The movie currently has unimpressive metascore of 49 based on 21 reviews on review aggregator MetaCritic.
Wilde was criticized for lack of originality and a rather predictable plot, while her 28-year-old boyfriend and the male lead Harry Styles was deemed out of his depth in regards to his performance, with some pointing out his British accent. Still, Pugh was praised for her "outstanding performance."
Peter Bradshaw of The Guardian was one of the critics, writing, "Directed by Olivia Wilde, it superciliously pinches ideas from other films without quite understanding how and why they worked in the first place." He added, "It spoils its own ending simply by unveiling it, and in so doing shows that serious script work needed to be done on filling in the plot-holes and problems in a fantastically silly twist-reveal."
USA Today's Brian Truitt said of Styles' accent, "Styles has already taken (warranted) grief for an accent that's all over the place." He further pointed out, "The lack of chemistry between Pugh and Styles is another disconnect - her dynamic with [Chris Pine], albeit antagonistic, is far more effective and not explored nearly enough."
Kate Erbland of IndieWire said, "Pugh's outstanding performance and the extraordinary below-the-line craftsmanship are all impeccably rendered, but they can't overcome the film's rotten core concept." Similarly, Tomris Laffly of The A.V. Club wrote, "Perhaps the chief deficit of 'Don't Worry Darling' isn't even predictability, but a discernible lack of new ideas of its own."
Pugh skipped the press conference for the movie at the Venice Film Festival, but did show up for the premiere. During the press conference, Wilde addressed the feud rumors between her and her star. Calling the stories "endless tabloid gossip," she sang praise for the "Black Widow" star.
"Florence is a force and we are so grateful she's able to make it tonight despite being in production on 'Dune'," she told reporters. "I know as a director how disruptive it is to lose an actor, even for a day, so I'm very grateful to her, I'm grateful to ['Dune: Part Two' director] Denis Villeneuve for helping us, and we're really thrilled we get to celebrate her work tonight."
"I can't say enough how honored I am to have her as our lead," Wilde continued. "She's amazing in the film, and as for all the endless tabloid gossip and all the noise out there, I mean, the internet feeds itself. I don't feel the need to contribute, I think it's sufficiently well nourished."
Wilde, however, dodged question about Shia LaBeouf, who was replaced with Styles in the film. When a The Hollywood Reporter writer began to ask about the "Transformers" star, the press moderator cut it as saying, "The question has been answered."
"It's separate," the journalist replied. "It's about Shia LaBeouf…" The moderator insisted, "I think the question [was] answered when she talked about the internet," as Wilde nodded in agreement.