Bil’s rating (out of 5): BBB.
United Kingdom, 1991. Sovereign Pictures, London Weekend Television, Stagescreen Productions. Screenplay by Derek Granger, Charles Sturridge, Tim Sullivan, based on the novel by E.M. Forster. Cinematography by Michael Coulter. Produced by Derek Granger. Music by Rachel Portman. Production Design by Simon Holland. Costume Design by Monica Howe. Film Editing by Peter Coulson.
This film is far from being the best of the adaptations made from E.M. Forster’s novels. After a widowed Englishwoman (Helen Mirren) moves to Italy and marries a man many years her junior, they have a child together and she dies during its birth. After having strongly disapproved of the marriage in the first place, Mirren’s relatives journey out from England to the Italian countryside to retrieve the child, which they assume will be no problem because the father isn’t expected to be all that devoted. What they don’t expect is to not only receive a fair fight from the young man, but also from Italy itself and all its attractive qualities. Featuring a terrific cast including a hilariously stuck-up Judy Davis, this film is sort of a lesser-rate A Room With A View, with Forster once again demonstrating how damaging social mores are upon society itself.