The film follows 17-year-old Cassandra Mortmain, and the fortunes of her eccentric family, struggling to survive in a decaying English castle. Her father is desperate to repeat the spectacular success of his first novel, but hasn't written a word for 12 years; her exquisite sister Rose can only rail against their fate, and their Bohemian step-mother Topaz is a nudist and no help at all. Salvation comes in the form of their American landlord Simon Cotton and his brother Neil. Although initially repelled by Simon, Rose is determined to make him fall in love with her and succeeds. A wedding is arranged and Cassandra is left on the sidelines as everyone around her is drawn into a maelstrom of interconnected relationships. But events spiral out of control, and before the summer ends she will experience frustrated desire, first love, and a broken heart.Written by
Rose Byrne did all of her own piano playing. See more »
The cooked ham Simon gives to Rose is a prop, judging by the ease with which Simon lifts it, the sound it makes when he puts it in Rose's arms, and the fact that no juice or grease drips on Rose's arms or dress. See more »
A final scene after Cassandra's last line shows an older Cassandra carrying a portable typewriter and a manuscript envelope through a large city. She passes Simon in the street, and the two smile at one another before Cassandra turns away to enter a publisher's office. (This ending is an extra on the DVD version.) See more »
This is such a wholly captivating romantic study in human values with deep personal growth for basically all the main characters, that it's like a breath of fresh air in comparison to the sleaziness of what gets regularly stamped out by the Hollywood machines. On one level it's a `coming of age' story, in that it is presented from the point of view of an adolescent girl's search for meaning in life, but it is so much more than just that. The relationship issues are strong and poignant, never tawdry or sensational. People make mistakes for all too human reasons, but they also learn from them and grow. We are left with a sense of hope and inspiration, and not just a fairytale promise. The details of the story are not otherwise important as an introduction. It is wonderful to see!
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