January 2, 2017


A Room with a View – 1986 | 117mins | Drama | Colour


Plot Synopsis

A Room with a View

A Room with a View is Merchant Ivory’s comedy of manners adapted from the novel by E M Forster.

Set in 1907, this is the story of Lucy Honeychurch (Helena Bonham Carter), a young girl visiting Italy at the turn of the century with her cousin Charlotte Bartlett (Maggie Smith) as a travelling companion and chaperone. While in Florence they stay at a pensione, but are booked in a room without a view, Mr. Emerson (Denholm Elliott) insists that the women take his rooms, which contain a view from the window. During dinner they also meet the other guests; Mr. Emerson�s son George (Julian Sands), Reverand Beebe (Simon Callow), sisters Catherine (Fabia Drake) and Teresa Alan (Joan Henley), and romantic novelist Miss Lavish (Judi Dench). Lucy is intrigued when she makes the acquaintance of free-spirited George Emerson; though at first she remains cold to his advances he later takes the opportunity to kiss her. A shocked Miss Bartlett witnesses the embrace and insists they leave for England at once.

Back in Surrey, where Lucy lives with mother (Rosemary Leach) and younger brother Freddy (Rupert Graves), she settles back into a young woman’s pastoral existence. With the passion of George out of the way, Lucy settles into her relationship with Cecil (Daniel Day-Lewis), a twit to whom she is engaged. It turns out that there is a vacant cottage in the area and Lucy suggests Catherine and Teresa Alan as possible tenants. Freddy has another idea. On a recent trip to London, he met a father and son who he thinks might make good neighbours, none other than Mr. Emerson and George. Thinking the two to be wildly eccentric, Freddy intends his invitation as a joke, but Mr. Emerson accepts and moves into the area.

In time, George and Freddy become good friends and play many games of tennis and enjoy naked swimming at the house. Lucy tries to avoid paying attention to George, but there is no doubt her feelings are beginning to mount for the charming young man. One day George kisses Lucy once again, and then follows this by proclaiming his love and warning Lucy against marrying Cecil. Lucy must now make a decision. Does she take the safe and sound and surely dull life with Cecil, or does she allow her feelings for George to emerge? She can’t have it both ways, but she does break off her engagement with Cecil and plans to go to Greece with the Alan sisters. Charlotte and Mr. Emerson intervene and Lucy and George are reunited. They marry and spend their blissful honeymoon in Florence, in the same pensione they met; naturally the room they occupy is the one with a view.

Production Team

James Ivory: Director
Brian Savegar: Art Direction
Elio Altramura: Art Direction
Paul Bradley: Associate Producer
Peter Marangoni: Associate Producer
Tony Pierce-Roberts: Cinematography
John Bright: Costume Design
Jenny Beavan: Costume Design
Humphrey Dixon: Film Editing
Paolo Mantini: Makeup Department
Carol Hemming: Makeup Department
Sally Harrison: Makeup Department
Christine Beveridge: Makeup Department
Barrie Guard: Music Direction
Richard Robbins: Original Music
Ismail Merchant: Producer
Brian Ackland-Snow: Production Design
Gianni Quaranta: Production Design
Ruth Prawer Jhabvala: Script
Ray Beckett: Sound Department
Alan Killick: Sound Department
Tony Lenny: Sound Department
Peter Compton: Sound Department


Maggie Smith: Charlotte Bartlett
Helena Bonham Carter: Lucy Honeychurch
Denholm Elliott: Mr Emerson
Julian Sands: George Emerson
Simon Callow: The Reverend Mr Beebe
Patrick Godfrey: The Reverend Mr Eager
Judi Dench: Miss Lavish
Fabia Drake: Miss Catharine Alan
Joan Henley: Teresa Alan
Amanda Walker: The Cockney Signora
Daniel Day-Lewis: Cecil Vyse

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