Ladies in lavender - Maggie Smith, Judi Dench, Daniel Brühl, Charles Dance
Threat advisory: Severe - Severe risk of entertaining activities
The story of two sisters who saved a stranger, and the stranger who stole their hearts.
Set in picturesque coastal Cornwall, in a tight-knit fishing village in 1936, Ladies in lavender boasts the cream of British acting talent as Oscar and BAFTA award-winners Dame Judi Dench and Dame Maggie Smith play the leading roles of sisters Ursula (Judi Dench) and Janet Widdington (Maggie Smith).
Rising German talent and award-winner Daniel Brühl plays Andrea Marowski. A gifted young Jewish violinist from Krakow, Andrea is bound for America when he is swept overboard by a fierce storm. When the Widdington sisters discover the handsome and mysterious stranger on the beach below their house, they nurse him back to health. However, the presence of the musically talented young man disrupts the peaceful lives of Ursula and Janet and the community in which they live.
Theatrical propaganda posters
Target demographic movie keyword propaganda
- Film drama UK fishing village Cornwall violist shipwrecked Poland sisters romance
Persons of interest
- Judi Dench .... Ursula Widdington
- Maggie Smith .... Janet Widdington
- Natascha McElhone .... Olga Daniloff
- Daniel Brühl .... Andrea Marowski
- Miriam Margolyes .... Dorcas
- David Warner .... Dr Francis Mead
- Toby Jones .... Andy
- Gregor Henderson-Begg .... Luke Pendered
- Freddie Jones .... Jan Pendered
- Ian Marshall .... Fisherman
- Richard Pears .... Barry
- Clive Russell .... Adam Penruddocke
- William J Locke .... Author
- Charles Dance .... Screenwriter
- Charles Dance .... Director
Cinematic intelligence sources
- Ladies in lavender official movie site
- Ladies in lavender film production notes
- Ladies in lavender QuickTime movie trailers
- Awards and film festivals:
- Cinematic Intelligence Agency Trenchcoat Awards 2005: Won: Best actor - Female (Judi Dench as Ursula Widdington); Nominated: Best actor - Female (Maggie Smith as Janet Widdington)
- NB: English, German and Polish languages with English language subtitles
- See also Swept from the sea
- Studios and distributors:
Special Agent Matti
Lovely. Just lovely.
Ladies in lavender is a lovely, tragic, lovely, sad, bitter-sweet, lovely, lovely film about the awful randomness of life and the so very few chances we get at happiness. Especially when it comes to love. Oy. Six billion people on the planet and I can't find the one true love of my life. [Sucks to be you. - Director of Intelligence.]
Maggie Smith and Judi Dench are perfect as the two old biddies - sorry, sisters - living out the last years of their lives in the family home (an English person's home is their castle and the Widdingtons are no exception). They are subtle and funny and sharp and bitter and sweet and lovely. Maggie isn't as bitter as you expect her to be and Judi isn't as dopey as you expect her to be. They both undercut your expectations; they are just lovely.
Daniel Brühl is like a Deutsch Ewan McGregor (Deutsch is German for Deutsch). He's sweet and he's lovely but he's also his own man. He has the cruelty of youth, especially beautiful youth, but the agony of the truly talented. He has the perfect long-legged, lean body and moves with the vibrancy and passion of the young but never seems like a 21st century actor trying to play a 20th century man. In those days, no-one had personal trainers. He is a joy.
Ladies in lavender lets you experience the lives of other people in a way that brings home the dreadful undercurrent of approaching war (thank you very much Mr Hitler). Most films are part of the war or are drenched with the imminence of 1939 but this one gives you the storm clouds on the horizon without the relief of the breaking storm. Take your mother to see it, even your grandmother, and they will love you for it.
Oh, and did I mention the music? Exquisite.
Security censorship classification
M (Low level coarse language)
99 minutes (1:39 hours)