QuartetAnything Maggie Smith does is alright with me. She could break wind on screen and I’d give her a standing ovation. She’s just my kind of actress, like Judi Dench and Joan Plowright. No wonder I have multiple orgasms when I watch ‘Tea with Mussolini’ – Maggie, Judi, Joan AND Cher. It’s a gay boy’s wet dream. Liam didn’t have to ask me twice when he suggested we see ‘Quartet,’ Maggie’s latest flick. Adapted from the original play, Dustin Hoffman’s directorial debut  is set in a retirement home for classical musicians and singers. Maggie stars alongside Tom Courtney, Pauline Collins, Billy Connolly and Michael Gambon with a supporting chorus of real-life former divas, fiddlers, and ivory ticklers. We took our seats at Cinema City, our local picture house. The auditorium was crammed with half-cut old folk of Norfolk spending their winter fuel allowance on buckets of booze, illustrating that not every pensioner in the land is living on the edge of malnutrition and hypothermia. The film is a sweet tale of long-lost love reignited in old age. It brought back fine memories of an old friend’s mother who moved into sheltered housing and married the boy next door. At the time, they were both in their eighties and found a little companionship and happiness towards the end of their lives. I was honoured to be invited to their wedding. It gave me hope for the future, something I’ve clung onto ever since.

Naturally, Maggie as a crabby old opera singer was magnificent but, for me, Pauline Collins stole the show. Her touching performance of someone suffering from the onset of dementia, slipping in and out of cognisance, was delicately and beautifully played. Dementia is a subject Liam and I know only too well.

Tea with MussoliniYou might also like:

There’s Hope for Us All

Oh Woe is Me

12 thoughts on “Quartet

  1. I want to see this one also, my Mother had a companion later in her life, the family where shocked at first, it was so good for her and him, they never married but where soul mates. I was so thank full to see her happy, hope I get to see it soon.


    1. I think you’ll love the film – funny and sweet. It’s lovely that your mother had someone to share her twilight years with. I often wonder how I would feel if my mother did the same. I really hope I’d be fine with it.


  2. coincidence! Just ordered Tea With Musso a couple of days ago – saw the line up and thought ‘Must have’. Now have to preorder Quartet – you’re costing me Jack, can’t you stick with theatre reviews and evenings at the pub?


    1. You’ll laugh your winter socks off at TwM (and weep into your Turkish coffee), especially the last scene given your soldier-boy past! More film reviews to come, I’m afraid. Better cash in the premium bonds 😉


  3. Oh, hadn’t heard about this film. Same as you, love Maggie Smith. You can’t not. Looking forward to watching Pauline Collins too, then. Doubt Hayal Sinema in Fethiye are going to bother pulling this one in. Shall have to acquire the film by other means. 🙂


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