I Capture the Castle (2003)

R  |   |  Drama, Romance  |  8 August 2003 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.1/10 from 5,437 users   Metascore: 63/100
Reviews: 65 user | 59 critic | 29 from Metacritic.com

A love story set in 1930s England that follows 17-year-old Cassandra Mortmain, and the fortunes of her eccentric family, struggling to survive in a decaying English castle.



(novel), (screenplay)
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2 wins & 4 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Sophie Stuckey ...
Cassandra - aged 7
Helena Little ...
Florence Jones ...
Rose (aged 10)
Harrison Ward ...
Topaz Mortmain
Joe Sowerbutts ...
Aubrey Fox-Cotton
Sarah Woodward ...
Leda Fox-Cotton


The film follows 17-year-old Cassandra Mortmain, and the fortunes of her eccentric family, struggling to survive in a decaying English castle. Her father is desperate to repeat the spectacular success of his first novel, but hasn't written a word for 12 years; her exquisite sister Rose can only rail against their fate, and their Bohemian step-mother Topaz is a nudist and no help at all. Salvation comes in the form of their American landlord Simon Cotton and his brother Neil. Although initially repelled by Simon, Rose is determined to make him fall in love with her and succeeds. A wedding is arranged and Cassandra is left on the sidelines as everyone around her is drawn into a maelstrom of interconnected relationships. But events spiral out of control, and before the summer ends she will experience frustrated desire, first love, and a broken heart. Written by <l_wuisan@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


You can't choose who you fall in love with. See more »


Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for brief nudity | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:



Release Date:

8 August 2003 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Aihmaloti kardia  »

Box Office


$8,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

£138,142 (UK) (9 May 2003)


$1,174,139 (USA) (26 September 2003)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs



Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?


Manorbier Castle in Tenby, Wales, which was used for many of the shots of the Mortmain family's castle, had a moat that had not been used for many years. For the shots of Cassandra and Neil swimming in the moat, large amounts of clay were brought in to make the moat watertight. It was then filled from tankers of water brought from elsewhere, because the local water supply could not supply the large amount needed. See more »


Rose sends Cassandra a bottle of what appears to be Penhaligon's Bluebell perfume for her 18th birthday. According to the Penhaligon's website, the Bluebell perfume was first manufactured in 1978, whereas the film takes place around the early 1940s. See more »


[first lines]
Cassandra: I write this sitting in the kitchen sink.
See more »


References Pride and Prejudice (1995) See more »


Happy Birthday
Written by Patty S. Hill and Mildred J. Hill (as Mildred Hill)
Published by Keith Prowse Music Publishing Co Ltd
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Good, but not as good as the book.
28 December 2004 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

I read Dodie Smith's 'I Capture The Castle' about three years ago and found it a charming and engrossing read. I looked forward to the film and have just watched on the BBC. I was pleasantly surprised with the film because I thought that it would put people off the book but the casting was very good for all of the characters.

The main problem was the fact that with the book, it is written as a diary with Cassandra's thoughts about everything but in the film, the viewer just got a brief comment about the several situations. Despite this, the film was sweet and the actress playing Cassandra is perfect. Not exactly how I imagined it but films hardly ever beat the books. I give it 7.5/10

11 of 12 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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Why is this movie rated 'R' in the US?! ...and opinion. JackMercy
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was anyone else... masha_xo
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