Keswick Film Club - The Governess

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Sunday 22nd January 5:00 PM

The Governess 

Director: Sandra Goldbacher Country: UK
Cert: 15 Year: 1998 Length: 115 mins
The Governess

Programme Notes

Cinema Handout (PDF 73KB)

Audience Reaction

Score: 68.56% Attendance: 119



  • More details on this film at the Internet Movie Database



Keswick Film Club started showing alternative films back in February 1999 and (ignoring possible counting errors...) tonight is the 1000th film we have shown! To celebrate this amazing feat, we decided to show the first film again. The Governess was first shown on 7th February 1999; thanks to all the volunteers and to Tom Rennie and the Alhambra we are still going strong in 2017; here's to the next 1000 films together! Maybe you were at the first? Have you been coming along ever since?

Why not let us have any special memories you have?

Set in the 1840s, Minnie Driver plays Rosina in the title role; she has been brought up in a London Sephardic Jewish community but, on the death of her father has to find a job to support her family. She obtains the post of governess to a young girl on a tiny Scottish island, changing her name to Mary to avoid anti-Semitism. The father (Tom Wilkinson) - who spends every possible moment avoiding his wife with his photography hobby - begins to spend time with Mary, whilst his teenage son (Jonathan Rhys Meyers) falls hook line and sinker for her...

I will leave it to one of our favourite critics over the years - Roger Ebert - to summarise the result: "Photography provides the counterpoint: Their dance of attraction begins at arm's length, through the pictures they take of each other. The claustrophobic, isolated Victorian household is a stage on which every nuance, however small, is noticed. And there are rich underlying ironies, not least that by denying their assigned places in society (he as a husband, she as a Jew), they are able for a time to function freely just as two people happy to be together in mind and body".



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Keswick Film Club won the Best New Film Society at the British Federation Of Film Societies awards in 2000.

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