A Room with a View (1985 film)

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A Room with a View
Room with a view.jpg
Theatrical release poster
Directed by James Ivory
Produced by Ismail Merchant
Screenplay by Ruth Prawer Jhabvala
Based on A Room with a View 
by E. M. Forster
Starring Helena Bonham Carter
Maggie Smith
Denholm Elliott
Julian Sands
Daniel Day-Lewis
Judi Dench
Music by Richard Robbins (score)
Giacomo Puccini (sung by Kiri Te Kanawa)
Cinematography Tony Pierce-Roberts
Edited by Humphrey Dixon
Production
company
Distributed by Curzon Film Distributors (UK)
Release dates
  • 13 December 1985 (1985-12-13) (RCFP)
  • 11 April 1986 (1986-04-11) (UK)
Running time 117 minutes
Country United Kingdom
Language English
Budget £2.3 million[1]
Box office $20,966,644[2]

A Room with a View is a British romance drama film directed by James Ivory and produced by Ismail Merchant of E. M. Forster's 1908 novel of the same name. The film follows closely the novel by use of the chapter titles to section the film into thematic segments.[citation needed] Set in England and Italy, it is about a young woman in the restrictive and repressed culture of Edwardian era England and her developing love for a free-spirited young man.

Plot[edit]

Miss Lucy Honeychurch is from an English village in Surrey and is on holiday in Italy with her much older cousin and chaperone, Charlotte Bartlett. Charlotte is conventionally English, with an extremely restrictive personality and tends to get her way by expressing her emotions to manipulate others. Lucy has been brought up in an upper class but loving and easygoing household, and had fewer inhibitions, which creates a strong tension between Charlotte and herself. They are in contrast with the more free-thinking and free-spirited backdrop of Italy. At a small pensione Lucy meets such people as Reverend Beebe, the two Miss Alans, and the author Miss Eleanor Lavish, but most importantly, the nonconformist Mr. Emerson and his handsome, philosophical son, George, who becomes friends with Charlotte. These men, although also English, represent the forward-thinking ideals of the turn-of-the-century, seeking to leave behind the repression and caution that was the norm in Victorian times. At first, the Emersons seem strange and unfamiliar to Lucy and Charlotte. They seem sincere but unaware of finer upper class Victorian manners. Mr. Emerson offers to switch rooms with the women, who desire a window with a view. Charlotte is offended, believing him to be rude and tactless for what she perceives to be indebting them. As Lucy begins her journey to maturity, she finds herself drawn to George due to his mysterious thinking and readily expressed emotions.

A number of people staying at the pension take a carriage ride in the country. A mischievous Italian driver gets back at Charlotte by misdirecting an unchaperoned Lucy to George in a barley field as he admires the view. George suddenly embraces and passionately kisses Lucy as she approaches him. Charlotte has followed Lucy, witnesses the act, and quickly stops the intimacy. George's unreserved passion shocks Lucy, but also lights a secret desire and romance in her heart. Charlotte suggests George kissing her was the act of a rake. Charlotte makes reference to a heartbreak from her youth that occurred the same way and has behaved accordingly with disgust and anger toward George. Charlotte uses guilt to coerce Lucy to secrecy to save both their reputations as a young lady and a chaperone, but it is mostly for her own benefit. Normally, if a young man kissed a young lady, an engagement should be announced to preserve her reputation, but Charlotte considers George to be an undesirable influence. Upon returning to England, Lucy tells her mother nothing and pretends to forget the incident. She accepts a marriage proposal from a wealthy and respectable but snobbish man named Cecil Vyse (Daniel Day-Lewis). However, she soon learns that both George and his father have moved to her small village and will be her neighbors due to a letter from Cecil Vyse inviting them to reside in an empty cottage.

The appearance of George soon disrupts Lucy's plans and causes her suppressed feelings to resurface, complicated by the supposed need for secrecy. Lucy consistently refuses George's pursuit of her, but mysteriously breaks off her engagement to Cecil, and makes plans to visit Greece. George has also decided that he must move for peace of mind and makes arrangements. Lucy stops by Reverend Beebe's and is confronted by George's father before they are to leave town. She suddenly realizes that the only reason that she planned to travel was to escape her feelings for George. At the end, we see George and Lucy eloped in the Italian pension where they met, in the room with the view.

Cast[edit]

Filming[edit]

A Room With a View was filmed in Emmetts Garden, Sevenoaks and Foxwold House, Chiddingstone. Lucy and Cecil take a walk through the village after their engagement party. They stop at St Mary's Church to speak to Mr Beebe. Later in the film the Emersons rent a house in the village, Mr Beebe's house is also in the village behind the church. It is there that Lucy and Mr Emerson talk about her relationship with his son at the end of the film. Lucy's engagement party was filmed in the grounds of Emmetts Garden.[3]

Box office[edit]

The film made $4.4 million at the US box office in the first 12 weeks of release.[1]

Awards[edit]

Wins
Nominations

Soundtrack[edit]

  1. "O mio babbino caro" (from Gianni Schicchi by Puccini) – Kiri Te Kanawa with London PO, conducted by Sir John Pritchard
  2. "The Pensione Bertollini"
  3. "Lucy, Charlotte, and Miss Lavish See the City"
  4. "In the Piazza Signoria"
  5. "The Embankment"
  6. "Phaeton and Persephone"
  7. "Chi il bel sogno di Doretta" (from La Rondine, Act One by Puccini) – Kiri Te Kanawa with London PO, conducted by Sir John Pritchard
  8. "The Storm"
  9. "Home, and the Betrothal"
  10. "The Sacred Lake"
  11. "The Allan Sisters"
  12. "In the National Gallery"
  13. "Windy Corner"
  14. "Habanera" (from Carmen by Georges Bizet)
  15. "The Broken Engagement"
  16. "Return to Florence"
  17. "End Titles"
  • Original music composed by Richard Robbins
  • Soundtrack album produced by Simon Heyworth
  • Arrangements by Frances Shaw and Barrie Gurad
  • Music published by Filmtrax PLC

See also[edit]

References[edit]

External links[edit]