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My House in Umbria (2003)

TV Movie  |  TV-14  |   |  Drama, Mystery, Thriller  |  25 May 2003 (USA)
7.0
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Ratings: 7.0/10 from 2,643 users  
Reviews: 53 user | 16 critic

An unlikely group of people find solace and friendship after being thrown together in the wake of a terrorist attack.

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(novel), (teleplay)
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Title: My House in Umbria (TV Movie 2003)

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Nominated for 2 Golden Globes. Another 4 wins & 24 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
Thomas 'Tom' Riversmith
...
Werner
...
Inspector Girotti
...
Quinty
...
Dr. Innocenti
...
Aimee
Cecilia Dazzi ...
Rosa Crevelli
Anna Longhi ...
Signora Barcini
Deirdre Harrison ...
Phyllis, Aimee's Mother
Silvia De Santis ...
Madeleine
Alison Cameron Adam ...
General's Daughter (as Alison Adam)
...
Francine Riversmith
Taddeo Harbutt ...
Young General
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Storyline

After a bomb destroys a railway carriage, the four survivors repair to the villa of one, Mrs. Delahunty, a writer of romance novels, a woman with a past. The others are an aging British general, a young German man, and Aimee, an American girl orphaned in the blast. As these four strangers recover in Umbria's countryside and become friends, Aimee's uncle, a cold and childless academic who studies red carpenter ants, arrives to fetch her. Mrs. Delahunty fears this may not be in Aimee's best interests, begins to drink heavily, and fails in her attempts to connect with Aimee's uncle. Meanwhile, a persistent detective investigates the blast. Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

villa | girl | carpenter | ant | american | See All (159) »

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When you open your door to strangers, you never know who might come in. See more »


Certificate:

TV-14 | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Official Sites:

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Language:

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Release Date:

25 May 2003 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Mi casa en Umbria  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Quotes

Mrs. Emily Delahunty: In the garden, delphiniums were in flower. Through scented twilight, the girl in the white dress walked with a step as light as a morning cobweb. That evening she hadn't a care in the world.
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Connections

Featured in The 61st Annual Golden Globe Awards (2004) See more »

Soundtracks

Rosa's Song
Written and Performed by Cecilia Dazzi
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User Reviews

 
An underrated triumph
28 December 2004 | by (UK) – See all my reviews

Having just seen this film in the cinema, I have to say it didn't flag at all, and it was graced by one of Maggie Smith's greatest performances - and which fully deserved her Emmy award. The film dramatises the necessary illusions with which we need to live our lives. For Emily Delahunty, alcohol and the escapism of the romance fiction she writes are the props to her very existence. To keep sane the illusion of happiness sometimes is necessary to keep going. And yet, out of tragedy comes the hint of salvation: some kind of family, and a girl who becomes a symbol of how she can have hope for the future. This is not a cosy film, as some misguided critics have labelled it. It is not gardens, Italy, cups of tea: it is a film of illusion, escapism, isolation and the human spirit in the face of tragedy and death. Released in the UK after the quaint "Ladies in Lavender" it was unfortunately seen by the critics as exactly the same kind of film - and so missing the point completely.

Playing the troubled alcoholic, a vulnerable ageing romance novelist, Smith is on amazing form. Never mannered, she is perfect in her second role in a William Trevor novella (her first was in the 1984 "Mrs Silly" for ITV in the UK, for which she was nominated for a BAFTA). Using those expressive eyes, and a crushed, occasionally slurred voice, she draws you into the film. If this makes me sound like a Smith groupie, I have to point out that I disliked intensely this actress's mannered caricatures in such films as "Tea with Mussolini" or "Washington Square" (though, faced with the awful scripts, maybe she decided just to push it for laughs...). That is why she deserves recognition for this film: she reminds us that, with the right material, she can be the best - and not just the witty old bat in "Gosford Park" or the the stern teacher in "Harry Potter". After Smith's Emmy award, it was criminal that Meryl Streep robbed Dame Maggie at the Golden Globes for her raiding of the dressing-up box in "Angels in America".

For the supporting cast, Ronnie Barker, Timothy Spall, and Chris Cooper are all superb: understated, natural, and working in a brilliant ensemble. They have such rapport with Smith that the film just whizzes by.


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