Encounter of three social classes of England at the beginning of the 20th century : the Victorian capitalists (the Wilcoxes) considering themselves as aristocrats, whose only god is money ; the enlightened bourgeois (the Schlegels), humanistic and philanthropic ; and the workers (the Basts), fighting to survive. The Schlegel sisters' humanism will be torn apart as they try both to softly knock down the Wilcox's prejudices and to help the Basts. Written by
When Charlie and Dolly Wilcox are hiding from Margaret Schlegel in the castle, the scene closes with low angle wide shot of the castle with a view of the sky behind it, revealing an aircraft contrail. There were no aircraft capable of leaving high-altitude contrails in the time period this movie is set in. See more »
Dearest Meg, I'm having a glorious time. I like them all. They are the very happiest, jolliest family that you can imagine. The fun of it is that they think me a noodle, and say so - at least, Mr. Wilcox does. Oh Meg, should we ever learn to talk less.
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Howard's End is not an easy movie to sit through if you do not typically watch period films. The language and euphemisms are very old fashioned (1910). But if you really sit back and watch the story unfold you will become engrossed. The crafting of the story by Merchant Ivory is impeccable. They tell the story so visually that you may not notice how physically alike Margaret Schlegel is to Ruth Wilcox in carriage and deportment, but the light-bulb goes off when the housekeeper of Howard's End mistakes Margaret for Ruth. The story itself is so quiet and brilliant that you don't realize something so very profound has happened until the credits roll. Every performance is amazing, but Emma Thompson (she won the Best Actress Oscar) and Vanessa Redgrave stand out. Their scenes together are so full of nuances that it's hard to take it all in during a first viewing.
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