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The Winter Guest (1997)

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A recent widow who is determined to leave Scotland for Australia with her son gets an unexpected visit from her aging mother.

Director:

Alan Rickman

Writers:

Sharman Macdonald (screenplay), Alan Rickman (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
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5 wins & 9 nominations. See more awards »

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An array of glacially paced performances of theater artists and actors of all genres and nationalities both well-known and under-recognized.

Directors: David Michalek, Paul Warner
Stars: William H. Macy, Holly Hunter, Liev Schreiber
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Phyllida Law ... Elspeth
Emma Thompson ... Frances
Sheila Reid Sheila Reid ... Lily
Sandra Voe Sandra Voe ... Chloe
Arlene Cockburn Arlene Cockburn ... Nita
Gary Hollywood Gary Hollywood ... Alex
Sean Biggerstaff ... Tom
Douglas Murphy Douglas Murphy ... Sam
Tom Watson Tom Watson ... Minister
Jan Shand Jan Shand ... Café Proprietor
Sandy Neilson Sandy Neilson ... Passer-by
Billy McElhaney Billy McElhaney ... Bus Driver
Helen Devon Helen Devon ... Woman in Tea Shop
Harry Welsh Harry Welsh ... Boy in Teashop
Christian Zanone Christian Zanone ... Young Man in Church
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Storyline

The film centers on four pairs - Frances is a recent widow who wants to get away from Scotland to Australia with her teenage son Alex to escape her memories, arrival of her old mother Elspeth makes her reconsider her decision. Alex approaches his first sexual experience with neighbour girl Nita. Chloe and Lily are two old women who like to attend strangers' funerals and Tom with Sam are two schoolboys who skip school to play on the beach and talk. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

No matter where you hide life will always find you See more »

Genres:

Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language and brief sensuality | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

UK | USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

24 December 1997 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

L'invitée de l'hiver See more »

Filming Locations:

Elie, Fife, Scotland, UK See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$21,305, 28 December 1997, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$776,332, 29 March 1998
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (TV)

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Emma Thompson and Phyllida Law are real-life mother and daughter. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Alex: Are you all right?
Frances: Don't keep asking.
See more »

Connections

References Now, Voyager (1942) See more »

Soundtracks

Take Me With You
Sung by Elizabeth Fraser (Cocteau Twins)
Music by Michael Kamen
Lyrics by Alan Rickman
See more »

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User Reviews

 
A delicious and touching story.
20 January 2004 | by niblungenSee all my reviews

This film is one of those small but delicious productions in modern european film industry that makes it worth to continue going to the cinema. It is the film version of a Scottish theatre production, that did run with the same basic cast.

There is no main plot. It is the summing up of four basic stories which are somewhat interwoven, describing the relationships between very different human beings.

The Scottish winter, framing all the story, is almost a character of its own. You can almost sense the ice, the intense coldness around the characters, but you altogether feel the warmth of human emotions.

The actors are all outstanding in their characters. Above all others, Phyllida Law and Emma Thompson (real life mother and daughter) give a very powerful performance, portraying a depressed recent widow and her energetic and controlling mother: really a charming old lady.

The great Alan Rickman's direction is in my opinion a very good job, bringing all the different stories together and making a magnificent choral film.

I eagerly look forward to his next attempt in directorial tasks.


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