Middle aged Chris Harper and Annie Clarke are best friends. They spend much of their time at their local Knapely, Yorkshire County chapter of the Women's Institute (WI), whose motto is "enlightenment, fun and friendship". Although they like most of the women at the WI (the friendship part), they, but the perceived flaky Chris in particular, hold the way Marie, the local president, runs the chapter with derision. They find much of what goes on there, especially the monthly presentations, banal and devoid of enlightenment and fun. Equally as banal was last year's fund-raising calendar, featuring local bridges, which raised a meager £75.60, with this year's proposed calendar, local churches, promising to be even more so. After Annie's husband John passes away from leukemia, Chris wants the WI to provide a memorial in his memory: a new sofa for the family room at the hospital. The one Chris wants to buy costs £999, which she proposes to raise by changing the fund-raising calendar to one ... Written by
Contrary to the depiction in the film, the proposal for the calendar enjoyed broad support in the Women's Institute organisation. See more »
While the cards are being dealt, Celia grabs hers twice before and after the cut to the overhead shot. See more »
[talking to Chris about her dead husband, John]
I'd rob every penny from this calendar if it would buy me just one more hour with him.
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The cast list is split into two halves. The first thirteen actors/characters (Helen Mirren/Chris to John Fortune/Frank) are followed by the main crew such as the producers, writer and director, with the remaining cast appearing after this. See more »
Greetings again from the darkness. Director Nigel Cole delivers a charming, touching, funny story with a message. Based on the true story of a few society women in England who decide to do a quasi-nude calendar to raise money for a cancer center. The well-known story itself holds few surprises, but the cast is so wonderful and the dialogue so crisp that one can't help but enjoy the film. Helen Mirren ("Gosford Park") and Julie Walters ("Educating Rita") lead the mostly female cast who bare it all ... sort of. As much as I liked the film, I do believe the two leads should have flipped roles to make this even more effective. Also, the pacing is true British, as many of the lines are missed due to U.S. audience out-loud laughter. Be forewarned if you see it in a full theatre ... you will miss a few lines. A wonderful movie for all ages and both sexes!
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