"I agree with Lizzie P that this film was taken at a slow pace particularly the first 1/2 hour. - 3/4 hour. I directed this wonderful play for my local amatuer drama group a few years ago and what appealed to me mostly was the fact that Jean Horton (played by Maggie Smith) was quite unable to sing any more resulting in the decision by the group of four to perform at the Annual Verdi concert by miming to their own record. I am disappointed that Sir Ronald Harwood and Dustin Hoffman chose to cut this fact out of the film.
The final scene (in the original play) with the four aged characters "singing" The Quartet was a delight - which the audiences of the film will sadly not see.
I agree with Igor's remarks about the only slight recognition (at the end) the former stars such as Dame Gwynneth Jones and John Rawnsley were given were given."