My House In Umbria review

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As Under The Tuscan Sun illustrated (for the three people who saw it), there's nothing like Italian real estate to swell the spirits. This time, it's not a failed marriage but a terrorist incident that provides the catalyst for some gentle soul-searching amidst the olive groves.

Maggie Smith is an ageing romance novelist whose shopping trip to Milan is rudely cut short when a bomb explodes in her train carriage. Emerging unscathed, she invites her fellow survivors - (who include Ronnie Barker's retired general and an orphaned American girl) - to recuperate at her villa. The problems start when the latter's uncle (Chris Cooper) arrives to take her home.

It may boast some pleasant scenery and a couple of Oscar-winners, but Richard Loncraine's HBO-produced movie still looks out of place on the big screen. Like The Gathering Storm, Loncraine's previous pre-Wimbledon offering, its natural home would appear to be BBC2 - sometime between University Challenge and Newsnight.


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