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Ladies in Lavender (2005)

Cast: Judi Dench, Judi Dench, Maggie Smith, more...
Director: Charles Dance, Charles Dance
    see all cast/crew...
Studio: Sony Pictures Home Entertainment
Genre: Foreign, Romantic Comedy, Costume Drama/Period Piece, UK
Running Time: 104 min.
Languages: English
Subtitles: English
    see additional details...

Two sisters engage in a subtle war for the affections of a man half their age in this British comedy drama. It's 1936, and Janet Widdington (Maggie Smith) and her sister, Ursula (Judi Dench), are a pair of elderly spinsters who share a home in Cornwall on the coast of England. After a storm, the sisters discover that someone has been washed up on the beach in front of their house. Bringing the body inside, they discover the victim is a handsome Polish man named Andrea Marowski (Daniel Brühl) who has suffered a broken ankle and speaks no English, only Polish and German. As the sisters patch up Andrea's ankle, Janet dusts off her old German textbook from school, and begins getting to know more about their guest. It isn't long before Janet develops an infatuation for the good-looking stranger, and attempts to teach him English, which is more than a bit maddening to Ursula, who has fallen head over heels for him -- especially after the sisters discover he's a gifted violinist and hear him display his craft on a borrowed instrument. As the sisters find themselves vying for Andrea's attention, they wonder if they should report his presence to the authorities, especially after Olga (Natascha McElhone), an attractive woman in her early thirties who lives nearby, becomes aware of Andrea's presence in the home and wants to make contact with him. Based on a short story by William J. Locke, Ladies in Lavender marked the directorial debut of actor Charles Dance. ~ Mark Deming, All Movie Guide

GreenCine Member Reviews

Sweet "Ladies" by talltale December 10, 2005 - 8:40 PM PST
4 out of 5 members found this review helpful
Old-fashioned in both content and style, so much so that it almost seems fresh and new, LADIES IN LAVENDER offers Dames Judi Dench and Maggie Smith as sisters in Cornwall who discover a shipwrecked young foreigner who changes their lives in ways expected and not so. Written (from a short story by Wm. J. Locke) and directed by Charles Dance, the movie puts those old-fashioned virtues to good use. Smith is spot-on, as ever, and Dench has never looked more beautiful, a surprise at her age perhaps, but this performance taps feelings I had not previously seen in her.

The rest of the cast--which includes Daniel Bruhl ("The Edukators," "Good-Bye Lenin"), Natascha McElhone, Miriam Margolyes and David Warner--is exceptional, as well. If there are no major surprises along the way, the result still stands as a lovely story, deeply felt and beautifully executed. Oh, yes--and the violin music, performed by Joshua Bell, is gorgeous.

GreenCine Member Rating

(Average 6.81)
16 Votes
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