The Governess (1998)

R  |   |  Drama, Romance  |  31 July 1998 (USA)
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Ratings: 6.2/10 from 2,495 users   Metascore: 60/100
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When the father of privileged Rosina da Silva violently dies, she decides to pass herself off as a gentile and finds employment with a family in faraway Scotland. Soon she and the family ... See full summary »


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3 wins & 3 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Florence Hoath ...
Clementina Cavendish
Henry Cavendish
Mrs. Cavendish
Arlene Cockburn ...
Lily Milk, the Maid
Emma Bird ...
Countess Koulinskyi ...
Aunt Sofka (as The Countess Koulinskyi)
Bruce Myers ...
Rosina's Father
Diana Brooks ...
Rosina's Mother
Raymond Brody ...
Olga ...
Cyril Shaps ...
Kendal Cramer ...
Young Rosina


When the father of privileged Rosina da Silva violently dies, she decides to pass herself off as a gentile and finds employment with a family in faraway Scotland. Soon she and the family father, Charles, start a passionate secret affair. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for sexuality and nudity | See all certifications »


Official Sites:



Release Date:

31 July 1998 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A Governanta  »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$57,799 (USA) (31 July 1998)


$3,900,000 (USA)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


This film is set around 1840. In the first scene in which the two main characters become intimate, you hear a zipper as Mr. Cavendish begins to undress. The zipper was not invented until 1891. See more »


Mary Blackchurch: You ask a lot of questions.
Henry Cavendish: Then you ask me one. Anything you like.
Mary Blackchurch: Why are you really back from Oxford?
Henry Cavendish: I was found in an opium den in Spitalfield with a whore.
[both laugh]
Henry Cavendish: You don't believe me and you're not surprised.
Mary Blackchurch: No.
See more »

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User Reviews

The driver peeks out, trying to find one face in this concrete world full of souls.
26 July 1999 | by (greenland) – See all my reviews

I quite enjoyed this movie. Sure, my mind wandered a lot because the story is hardly gripping. I'm also positive I won't remember much about it next week, except that Minnie Driver's talent and beauty is stunning. STUNNING. I did also feel that the leading man was poorly cast. He did not seem to me a person that a young, vibrant woman would fall for. I'm sure the script called for a older man, but age wasn't the problem. He just didn't seem to fit in with Minnie Driver. Nonetheless, the whole movie was excellently shot and wonderfully acted and extremely high quality, but conversely it's regrettably forgettable. (That's a nice phrase, no?)

3 of 3 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Was the father murdered? rinkdink2
wow DrPaigeMarshall
Charles question (spoliers) CrazyMaryT
Totally in love with Minnie Driver's character higgs_boson
JRM foxytaxi85
This household could have benefitted with Freud's expertise. karusichan
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