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PG
| | 1 hr 33 min | Drama, Romance, Comedy

The Enchanted April is a movie adaptation of a book written by British novelist Elizabeth von Arnim. It is a beautifully produced story about a group of English women who arrange to lease an Italian villa for a month to escape, if only temporarily, from their dreary London lives. The story begins on a rainy day in 1920s London. Rose and Lottie, middle class housewives who dutifully fulfill their housewifely chores year in and year out, are carried away by a sudden whim to travel to Italy for a month. Their stodgy husbands are shocked by their bold plan, but reluctantly permit them to go. To minimize expenses, these economically-minded ladies advertise for two other women to join them.

Their group is complete when they are joined at the villa by Mrs. Fisher, an aristocratic widow who is looking for a bargain and who wants as little interaction with the others as possible, and an attractive young socialite, Lady Caroline, who uses the trip as an means to escape the attentions of a very persistent admirer back in London.

In spite of communication difficulties with the villa staff, the ladies manage to settle in and enjoy their idyllic lake retreat. Rose, the originator of the idea to rent the villa, is convinced of the trans-formative nature of the place, and is firmly convinced that its magical powers will save her marriage and restore her husband's love for her.

The film explores the subtle interplay among the ladies, who at the outset, seem to have very little in common with one another. While good manners and breeding prevent the ladies from being overtly impolite, their little disagreements escalate, factions are formed, and the resulting animosities threaten to scuttle the entire party.

After a series of misunderstandings, wandering husbands, new-found love and re-found love, happy endings are had by all and Rose's unwavering faith in the villa's enchantment is affirmed.

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Stars
Josie Lawrence, Miranda Richardson, Joan Plowright, Polly Walker, Alfred Molina
Director
Mike Newell
Language
English
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