A Room With a View

Hard on the heels of David Lean's grandiose, touristic version of EM Forster's A Passage to India, the Merchant/Ivory/Jhabvala team get the scale of Forster's vision down to its right size. The story of the awakening of young Lucy (Bonham Carter), thanks to the liberating effect of the Tuscan countryside and the Latin temperament, is translated with perfect judgment, with the only lapses occurring over Forster's wry sense of humour. His satiric judgments can too often become arch: the 'grotesquely' illustrated intertitles here are a miscalculation of this order. None the less, in line with Forster's dicta on 'fully rounded characters', there is a fine gallery here; and the 'tea tabling' effect of the Home Counties upon grand emotion, from an era when dynastic families could topple over a single kiss, is mapped out with perfect precision. Decent, honest, truthful and, dearest of all to Forster, it connects. CPea.

Release details

Duration: 117 mins

Cast and crew

Director: James Ivory
Screenwriter: Ruth Prawer Jhabvala
Cast: Maggie Smith
Helena Bonham Carter
Denholm Elliott
Julian Sands
Simon Callow
Judi Dench
Daniel Day-Lewis
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