7.1/10
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117 user 55 critic

Ladies in Lavender (2004)

PG-13 | | Drama, Music, Romance | 27 May 2005 (USA)
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Two sisters befriend a mysterious foreigner who washes up on the beach of their 1930's Cornish seaside village.

Director:

Charles Dance

Writers:

William J. Locke (short story), Charles Dance
3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Judi Dench ... Ursula
Maggie Smith ... Janet
Daniel Brühl ... Andrea
Freddie Jones ... Jan Pendered
Gregor Henderson-Begg Gregor Henderson-Begg ... Luke Pendered
Miriam Margolyes ... Dorcas
David Warner ... Dr. Francis Mead
Clive Russell ... Adam Penruddocke
Richard Pears ... Barry
Natascha McElhone ... Olga Daniloff
Iain Marshall Iain Marshall ... Fisherman (as Ian Marshall)
Toby Jones ... Hedley
Trevor Ray Trevor Ray ... Very Old Man 1
John Boswall ... Very Old Man 2
Joanna Dickens Joanna Dickens ... Mrs. Pendered
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Storyline

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 L. J.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The story of two sisters who saved a stranger, and the stranger who stole their hearts. See more »

Genres:

Drama | Music | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for brief strong language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

Filmax [Spain]

Country:

UK

Language:

English | German | Polish | French

Release Date:

27 May 2005 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

A levendula illata See more »

Filming Locations:

Cadgwith, Cornwall, England, UK See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend:

£423,313 (United Kingdom), 14 November 2004, Limited Release

Opening Weekend USA:

$149,224, 1 May 2005, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$6,759,422, 30 October 2005
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (theatrical)

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Maggie Smith and Judi Dench were performing together in a West End play when they received the scripts. They consulted each other, and decided to do the project. See more »

Goofs

While Andrea is playing at the local party, another violin appears in the lower right hand corner and is being played at the same time that Andrea seems to be playing, but there's only one violin heard at the time. Could it be that the "real" violinist was captured on film by accident? See more »

Quotes

Andrea Marowski: [Andrea is about to leave, turns to Ursula] I walk.
Ursula Widdington: Oh, good. Um... we have chicken for supper.
[Andrea looks at her, not understanding]
Ursula Widdington: Um, um...
[she picks up Janet's German-English dictionary, but stops before opening it]
Ursula Widdington: Oh! Uh, Hundchen zum Abendessen.
[subtitles: Puppydog for supper]
Andrea Marowski: [he laughs] Hundchen?
Ursula Widdington: Hundchen, ja.
Andrea Marowski: Das ist gut. Wiedersehen.
[...]
See more »

Crazy Credits

Special thanks to the people of Helston, Cornwall and the people of Cadgwith, Cornwall. See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Best Man (2005) See more »

Soundtracks

Camborne Hill
Traditional
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User Reviews

 
Maggie Smith is the understated star
12 November 2004 | by wiseupSee all my reviews

This film bursts into life in a few electrifying scenes - but these scenes are perhaps muted by the general leisurely air of the whole.

What can be said is that this film belongs to Maggie Smith: although Judi Dench has the lovelorn role of the smitten sister, it is Dame Maggie who has the wider variety of emotions, the presence, and the charisma which gives the film the energy it needs to involve the viewer. A case in point is the scene where Dame Judi has her point of emotional release - and Dame Maggie tops it with just the slightest nuance of phrase. Indeed, hers is a performance of subtlety and delicacy, so understated and insightful, that it recalls the outstanding work that she did in "The Lonely Passion of Judith Hearne". If it was up to me, Dame Maggie would be right up there in contention for the Oscar and BAFTA.

She is, of course, perfectly paired with Dame Judi, who creates a portrayal of both pathos and charm. There is such rapport between the two that it wipes away memories of the caricatures of "Tea With Mussolini" and replaces it with genuine truth and humanity. The two dames are underscored by the comic bluster of Miriam Margolyes and the suspicious lusting of David Warner.

This is a film of emotion and elegance. If it lacks narrative drive and dynamic then it is more than made up for by the space created for the talents of the actors. It is a film which lives on in the memory - and for that we mainly have to thank the performance of Maggie Smith.


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