Taking place in pre-war England, aging sisters Ursula and Janet live peacefully in their cottage on the shore of Cornwall. One morning following a violent storm, the sisters spot from their garden a nearly-drowned man lying on the beach. They nurse him back to health, and discover that he is Polish. Communicating in broken German while they teach him English, they learn his name is Andrea and that he is a particularly gifted violinist. His boat was on its way to America, where he is headed to look for a better life. It doesn't take long for them to become attached to Andrea, and they dote on him. Other townspeople, however, have their suspicions, especially when he befriends a Russian woman, Olga.Written by
Charles Dance mentioned in his Production Diary that whilst they were casting, he got a phone call from Freddie Jones (who played Jan Pendered), who, having received the script, said "P**s-poor part, but I'll do it because I'm in love with Judi Dench." See more »
Andrea's German alternates between the perfect pronunciation of a German native speaker and a heavily accented version more suitable for somebody whose native language is Polish. See more »
Beautifully acted. The delineation of sibling rivalry between the two sisters, Ursula and Joan (Judi Dench and Maggie Smith, is a masterclass in itself. And what a treat to be entertained by Miriam Margoyes. Her Dorcas is the perfect foil for the two prim spinsters.
The script is finely wrought and the understated English humour a joy. There are moments when you just have to laugh out loud. At other times your empathy for the characters moves you to deep sadness and regret at lives that have had times of sorrow or been unfulfilled.
The visual imagery in this film is evokes the nostalgic feel of an English rural landscape of sixty years ago. The beautiful cinematography was complemented by the musical score.
This is the second English film in two weeks I have been really impressed by.
51 of 65 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?
| Report this