Downton Abbey – A New Era was like visiting old friends.
The global phenomenon’s much-anticipated movie reunites the popular cast as they travel to the South of France to unravel the mystery of the Dowager Countess’ newly inherited villa.
Yup! The Dowager Countess of Grantham (Maggie Smith) has acquired the French villa of a now-dead marquis, with whom she may or may not have had a late-19th-century liaison. “Do I look as if I’d turn down a villa in the south of France?” she asks her granddaughter, and quite frankly, I agree with her – would you?
The family have been graciously invited by the son of the marquis (Jonathan Zacca) and his mother (Nathalie Baye). The son is quite hospitable and yet the mother – not so much!
When the Crawleys arrive at the villa, the Earl of Grantham (Hugh Bonneville) discovers a family secret…
Meanwhile, Lady Mary (Michelle Dockery) stays behind at Downton with a not very well Countess of Grantham and reluctantly wrangles the crew of a silent film, in order to make a quick buck that will be used to repair Downton’s leaky roof.
It is great to see all your friends back in action in Downton Abbey – A New Era, with Lady Grantham’s quick wit and Carson’s (Jim Carter) old fashion ways, although there are a lot of stories to follow which is why, selfishly, I would’ve preferred another season. Nobody was left out and again, each character was touched on but, and yes I’m being greedy, there could’ve been more. There’s a story there from Daisy (Sophie McShera) to Mr Molesley (Kevin Doyle) to Barrow (Robert James Collier) to Mrs Patmore (Lesley Nicol)…
The film will be screening in South Africa from 29 April 2022.
Here’s a sidenote though
Weirdly enough, as Carson, the beloved butler, intent on keeping up tradition, grumbles on about the changing tides and the manner in which people behave, I was simultaneously eye-rolling at another cinema goer using a cell phone. The same two, who had just moments before, made a big song and dance in the popcorn queue about how desperately they’d wanted to see this movie and yet had spent the entire time chatting the way through the pic! I don’t get it! I’m sure they missed half the story line!