Sign up for our newsletters   

Baltimore City Paper home.

film Home > Movie Reviews

Film Clips

The Last September

The Last September

Director:Deborah Warner
Cast:Fiona Shaw, Maggie Smith, Michael Gambon
Genre:Film, Drama

By Luisa F. Ribeiro | Posted

In 1920, the British who had generations earlier been transplanted to Ireland were being squeezed out by the rising tensions of the Irish war for independence. An aristocratic bunch who continued to live as if on Edwardian soil (yet who identified totally with their Irish neighbors), these expatriate Brit socialites remained caught between two identities, between two countries that neither wanted nor trusted them. Writer Elizabeth Bowen brilliantly captured this anachronism in her cheeky and incisive 1929 novel The Last September. The film version, adapted by screenwriter John Banville and directed by debut filmmaker/theater stalwart Deborah Warner, captures much of the book's merry impertinence and abrupt tragedy. It glimmers with a stunning visual poetry, even while getting caught up in excessive visual gimmicks. Maggie Smith and Michael Gambon twitter and fuss as Sir Richard and Lady Myra Naylor, who throw open their fading estate to homeless, wandering odd couple Hugo and Francie Montmorency and the enigmatic Marda Norton (played with terrific dash by Fiona Shaw). Their comings and goings are observed with energetic enthusiasm by Lady Myra's niece, young Lois Farquar (beautifully played by newcomer Keeley Hawes), who becomes an unwitting magnet for the tremors of change raging about her. Opens at the Charles Theatre on June 2

Comments powered by Disqus
CP on Facebook
CP on Twitter