There's plenty to admire here, especially if your taste is tailored to the unusual.
Whatever were they smoking?
Kate Winslet can do anything ... except save this movie from quirky overkill.
The film has so many moodswings that watching it induces whiplash, and just about everybody in it, from Winslet on down to Judy Davis, playing the dressmaker's crotchety mother, flagrantly overdoes it.
The second Winslet sets her sewing machine on the ground and snarls, "I'm back, you bastards," we're delighted to hear we're in for something fun.
Positively explodes with a surfeit of pent-up creative energy that unfortunately doesn't know when to stop.
There are giggles to be had -- especially given the talents of cast members like Winslet, Davis, Hemsworth and Weaving -- but the laughs are not quite plentiful enough to make up for its awkward contrivances.
This confused and overlong film inhabits a world of caustic darkness that not even an expert seamstress could patch over with silly pratfalls.
Unfortunately, and despite its promising start, "The Dressmaker" doesn't move much beyond the level of well-costumed playacting.