My House In Umbria review

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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