A Handful of Dust

Watch A Handful of Dust

"It's a long fall from high society"
  • PG
  • 1988
  • 1 hr 58 min
  • 6.6  (2,330)

A Handful of Dust is a 1988 British drama film directed by Charles Sturridge, based on the novel of the same name by Evelyn Waugh. It stars James Wilby as Tony Last, a wealthy English gentleman who leads an idyllic life on his estate, Hetton Abbey, with his beautiful wife, Brenda (Kristin Scott Thomas), and their son, John Andrew (Richard Beale).

Tony is content with his comfortable existence, spending his days hunting, tending to the estate, and writing a book about his ancestors. However, things begin to change when Brenda becomes bored with their routine and begins an affair with a socialite named John Beaver (Rupert Graves).

As their relationship intensifies, Brenda becomes increasingly distant from Tony and their son, causing him to suspect that something is amiss. Tony hires a private investigator to follow Brenda, and his worst fears are confirmed when he discovers that she has been unfaithful.

Devastated, Tony confronts Brenda and demands that she end the affair. However, Brenda refuses and instead asks for a divorce, claiming that she never loved Tony and was only attracted to his money and social status.

Heartbroken and humiliated, Tony leaves Hetton Abbey and travels to South America to find solace in his writing. However, he soon finds himself embroiled in dangerous political situations and narrowly escapes with his life.

Years later, Tony returns to England a broken man, only to discover that Brenda has custody of their son and plans to marry John Beaver. Unable to accept this, Tony seeks revenge and plans a scheme to kidnap his son and flee the country.

A Handful of Dust is a haunting tale of love, betrayal, and loss, set against the backdrop of English aristocracy in the 1930s. James Wilby delivers a powerful performance as Tony Last, capturing the character's pain and disillusionment with a subtle intensity. Kristin Scott Thomas is equally impressive as Brenda, the manipulative social climber who is torn between her desire for Tony's money and her passion for John Beaver.

The film is beautifully shot, with stunning cinematography that captures the lush landscapes of Hetton Abbey and the stark desolation of South America. The score, composed by George Fenton, is also noteworthy, conveying the emotional depth of the story with haunting melodies and sparse, evocative instrumentation.

A Handful of Dust is a must-see film for fans of period dramas and literary adaptations. With its compelling performances, gorgeous visuals, and heartbreaking storyline, it is sure to move and captivate audiences for years to come.

A Handful of Dust is a 1988 romance movie with a runtime of 1 hour and 58 minutes. It has received mostly positive reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 6.6.

A Handful of Dust
Where to Watch A Handful of Dust
A Handful of Dust is available to watch free on Plex, The Roku Channel Free, Tubi TV and Vudu Free. It's also available to stream, download and buy on demand at Amazon Prime and Amazon. Some platforms allow you to rent A Handful of Dust for a limited time or purchase the movie and download it to your device.
  • Release Date
  • MPAA Rating
  • Runtime
    1 hr 58 min
  • Language
  • IMDB Rating
    6.6  (2,330)