At a home for retired musicians, the annual concert to celebrate Composer Giuseppe Verdi's birthday is disrupted by the arrival of Jean (Dame Maggie Smith), an eternal diva and the former wife of one of the residents.
In 1920s Ireland, an elderly couple reside over a tired country estate. Living with them are their high-spirited niece, their Oxford student nephew, and married house guests, who are trying... See full summary »
A haunting ghost story spanning two worlds, more than a century apart. When 13-year-old Tolly finds he can mysteriously travel between the two, he begins an adventure that unlocks family secrets laid buried for generations.
As the Best Exotic Marigold Hotel has only a single remaining vacancy, posing a rooming predicament for two fresh arrivals, Sonny Kapoor (Dev Patel) pursues his expansionist dream of opening a second hotel.
British retirees travel to India to take up residence in what they believe is a newly restored hotel. Less luxurious than advertised, the Marigold Hotel nevertheless slowly begins to charm in unexpected ways.
Two codependent roommates, on the verge of eviction, flee New York for the promise of sunshine in Los Angeles where their friendship is tested by a chance at fame, a fortune teller and an amorous wealthy aunt.
In a Florence pensione circa 1900 with English guests, George Emerson (Julian Sands) and his dad (Denholm Elliott) offer their rooms with views to Lucy Honeychurch (Helena Bonham Carter) and her chaperone, Charlotte Bartlett (Dame Maggie Smith). Lucy and George get acquainted, but Lucy returns to England. George and Lucy meet again, but now she's engaged.
Helena Bonham Carter,
After surviving a gruesome terrorist attack on an Italian train line, romance novelist Mrs. Emily Delahunty (Dame Maggie Smith) opens up her home and solitary life to a trio of stranded survivors. She soon forms friendships with each, but develops a special attachment to the young orphan Aimee (Emmy Clarke). So when Aimee's distant uncle arrives to retrieve her, Emily strives to convince the cold, mourning man that Umbria is Aimee's rightful home.Written by
Mrs. Emily Delahunty's (Dame Maggie Smith's) car is an Alfa Romeo 6C-2500, produced between 1947 and 1953. It is a five-seat touring car popular with affluent post-war customers interested in a sporty yet comfortable vehicle. See more »
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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The HBO TV movie "My House in Umbria" should be seen primarily for the complex and layered performance of divine Maggie Smith. As romance novelist Emily Delahunty, she projects an image of refinement and elegance that conceals a deeper, darker self. That self is revealed slowly, and we find hidden within a character that is not only at variance with Miss Delahunty's adopted persona, but also very different from the prim and proper ladies Maggie Smith habitually plays on the silver screen. We see that Miss Smith is capable even of being seductive and slatternly, most unlike her many repressed and spinsterish roles.
Maggie Smith has the kind of mesmerizing voice and marvelous diction that would enable her to entertain film audiences by reading the proverbial telephone book. I am reminded of Glenda Jackson's (virtual) one-woman show in "Stevie" and Joanne Woodward's voice-over of "The Age of Innocence".
The rest of the characters in "My House in Umbria" are, alas, a motley crew, sketched in only very lightly, merely second bananas to Maggie Smith's central figure. The time of the story is difficult to pin down based on the clothes and motor cars, but one imagines it takes place during the 1970s, the era of the Bader-Meinhof gang in Germany and the Red Brigades in Italy. The denouement is a little too pat, but the journey is still well worth our while.
One of the key questions raised in the film is what anger would drive a human being to commit an act of terror. But it becomes quickly apparent that political terrorism is not the only kind of "man's inhumanity to man" that is intended here. The focus is, rather, on innocence shattered and destroyed, the cruelty visited by individuals upon each other, the sense of guilt that it engenders, and the possibility of forgiveness and redemption that always, always exists if we "seize the day" and allow ourselves to be happy.
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