Good Luck to You, Leo Grande: The Emma Thompson Film That Dares to Centre Women’s Pleasure

Good Luck to You, Leo Grande: The Emma Thompson Film That Dares to Centre Women’s Pleasure
Credit 20th Century Studios

Emma Thompson is a busy woman. Not only is she starring in the film adaptation of the musical adaptation of Matilda but she is also starring in an equally iconic-looking film about women’s pleasure called Good Luck to You, Leo Grande.

The movie is getting a whole lot of attention for bringing attention to the topic of sex positivity and pleasure for women – older women in particular. It’s a topic that has turned a whole lot of heads, for good reason, so here’s a little look at everything we know about Good Luck to You, Leo Grande.

What is Good Luck to You, Leo Grande about?

Good Luck to You, Leo Grande
Good Luck to You, Leo Grande. Credit: 20th Century

Good Luck to You, Leo Grande centres on Emma Thompson’s character Nancy Stokes, who is a retired widow that seeks out the services of a younger male escort in an effort to explore her sexuality after a lifetime of unfulfilling sex.

The synopsis for the film reads as follows:

In Good Luck To You, Leo Grande, two-time Academy Award winner Emma Thompson (Love, Actually) embodies the candor and apprehension of retired teacher Nancy Stokes, and newcomer Daryl McCormack (Peaky Blinders) personifies the charisma and compassion of sex worker Leo Grande. As Nancy embarks on a post-marital sexual awakening and Leo draws on his skills and charm, together they find a surprising human connection.

In portraying Stokes’ story, Thompson has shared that she too was faced with challenging moments regarding her own relationship with her body – something that most people watching at home can probably relate to.

“It’s very challenging to be nude at 62,” she shared, per Marie Claire.

“Nothing has changed in the dreadful demands made upon women in the real world but also in acting. This thing of having to be thin is still the same as it ever way, and actually in some ways, I think it’s worse now.”

And while standing completely nude in front of the camera for Good Luck to You, Leo Grande, was no easy task for Tompson, she also explained that her age helped her through, somewhat.

“I don’t think I could’ve done it before the age that I am. And yet, of course, the age that I am makes it extremely challenging because we aren’t used to seeing untreated bodies on the screen.”

Thompson has also been quite vocal (inspiringly so) about the lack of attention women’s pleasure gets as a whole. She spoke about the issue in a recent, and frankly eye-opening, interview with GLAMOUR.

“Nobody talks about women’s sexual pleasure because they’re not interested,” she stressed.

“Whereas as soon as erectile dysfunction began to be discussed, a drug was immediately invented. Obviously! Women and their bodies –periods, menopause – we’re not talking about any of this.”

Naturally, with such a personal topic to focus on (both physically and emotionally), the two leads in this film had to build real trust between them. One of the sweetest elements from behind the scenes of the film is that McCormack and Thompson spent every waking moment together to build the intimacy you see on screen.

“We would walk to set together, we would walk home together. We would eat together, run the lines for the next day together, go to sleep and then repeat. So, for like a good four weeks we were just living in each other’s pockets and we became so close. We are very close now,” McCormack told the Independent.

Believe us when we say Good Luck to You, Leo Grande is shaping up to be quite a special film.

Who is in the cast lineup for the film?

Emma Thompson movie
Good Luck to You, Leo Grande. Credit: 20th Century

As we’ve mentioned, our queen Emma Thompson stars as Nancy Stokes in Good Luck to you, Leo Grande alongside an uber-charming Daryl McCormack as Leo Grande. Isabella Laughland is also listed in the cast as Becky and the movie is directed by Sophie Hyde.

Good Luck to you, Leo Grande: trailer

If you’d like to catch a glimpse of this heartwarming film, you can check out the official trailer for Good Luck to you, Leo Grande trailer below.

What are critics saying about Good Luck to You, Leo Grande?

Perhaps unsurprisingly, Good Luck to You, Leo Grande is winning the hearts of the masses over. Currently, on Rotten Tomatoes, it is sitting with a score of 95 per cent. Super fresh.

Claudia Puig of FilmWeek wrote that “It’s like a really well-written play… It’s disarming, surprising, and thought-provoking”.

And Stephanie Zacharek of TIME Magazine penned that “Thompson has always been a terrific actor, but she reaches a new plane here, a place where her vulnerability as a person and her confidence as a performer mesh into something glorious”.

Convinced yet?

When is the film’s Australian release date?

Good Luck to You, Leo Grande was first screened in Australia on June 12 as a part of the Sydney Film Festival. Its official release date for Aussie cinemas, however, is August 18, 2022.

And we cannot wait to get our eyeballs across this one.

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