Semi-autobiographical tale from the early life of director Franco Zeffirelli looks at the illegitimate son of an Italian businessman. The boy's mother has died, and he is raised by an ... See full summary »
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Hannah Taylor Gordon,
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Semi-autobiographical tale from the early life of director Franco Zeffirelli looks at the illegitimate son of an Italian businessman. The boy's mother has died, and he is raised by an Englishwoman in pre-WWII Fascist Italy. Living to each other in Florence, and presided over by an ambassador's widow, a group of Englishwomen live a sheltered existence which they believe is guaranteed personal protection in a tea reception given by Il Duce. However, as war breaks out, the women are interned. Occasionally in this English colony is a wealthy American, who visits among her travels and marriages to wealthy older men. She respects the "Scorpioni", as they are known, and secretly arranges for their stay in a hotel. The ambassador's widow finds her vulgar and tries to ignore her, but when the United States enters the war, the American too is taken into custody. Only then does she discover that her Italian lover has tricked her into signing over all her money and modern art collection to him, ... Written by
John Sacksteder <email@example.com>
Elsa is referred to as "a Jew". Until long after World War II, a female Jew in Europe was referred to as "a Jewess". See more »
The love affair between the artistically-inclined English community and Florence was soon to be overshadowed by the clouds of war.
But at the moment the sun is still shining on the squares and statues, and the dictator Mussolini is the gentleman who makes the trains run on time.
Excuse me, are you the Consul?
Connie Raynor of the Morning Post. I'm fascinated to know what His Majesty's Consul in Florence makes of it all?
I can't believe your readers would be ...
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Tea With Mussolini is solid entertainment. It is not the great film so many had thought it would be, but with a true story, great casting and performances, and an interesting setting and time it is enjoyable. The whole cast particularly the Scorpioni, the older English women living in Florence, were fantastic. In particular Maggie Smith (Hester), the crusty, sharp tongued wife of the former ambassador, and Joan Plowright as Mary, the sweet but strong grandmotherly type who essentially adopts Luca were fantastic. Cher as Elsa, the brash, nouveau riche American, was well cast. The young men playing Luca as a child, Charlie Lucas, and a teenager, Baird Wallace, were terrific. Vittorio, Elsa's lover and villain, played by Paoli Seganti showed "presence" on film. All in all a good two entertainment. Three stars!!!
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