Downton Abbey: A New Era (2022)
May 21, 2022 6:38 PM - Subscribe

The Dowager Countess receives a surprising letter: she has inherited a villa in the south of France. At the same time, the Crawleys receive a surprising request: would they permit a moving picture to be filmed in Downton Abbey? Some of the household don't approve of a movie being filmed in the house - but no worries, we'll just send them all off to France. The actors and crew invade and the staff go gaga over the stars in their midst. But the France-bound set find more drama at the villa than what is being filmed at Downton.

This was absolutely delightful. At least, the first 4/5 of it was absolutely delightful. I could have done without the sadness but...everything changes at Downton Abbey.
posted by Gray Duck (5 comments total)
This was a gentle delight and packed an awful lot into its runtime. The section in France felt a little under-baked to me - so much buildup and so little payoff - but that's a minor gripe. This was an apt capstone to the series.

Our experience watching it was also enhanced by a large party of elderly pensioners in the cinema. Their sincere laughter at the film's very gentle humour was utterly contagious.

Both Downton films are excellent examples of how to do TV-to-cinema. They felt ever so faithful - exactly the sort of stories that might have been told across series 7 and 8. No sense of being rushed and no insecure spectacle added to justify the big screen. Just tightly written drama.
posted by Lorc at 1:00 AM on May 22, 2022 [3 favorites]

Seeing the downstairs characters all dressed up was A DELIGHT!
posted by exceptinsects at 10:04 AM on May 23, 2022 [3 favorites]

I totally got a couple of deep belly laughs out of this, and we enjoyed it - Uncle Julian being in fine form. All the classic Downton cliches were in full effect, right down to a terrifing situation being made all better by somebody delivering a note containing only the word 'anti-climax'. Hugh Dancy was great fun, though afterwards we couldn't help but wonder what Lady Mary's fate would have been if he was still playing the role we last saw him in, as Hannibal Lector's protoge.
posted by Sparx at 3:21 PM on May 23, 2022 [1 favorite]

It was very noticeable that Lord Downton and the retired butler were very tanned a long time before they went to France. Perhaps it had been unseasonably warm up north? What was odd was that their lawyer was the colour of walnut and he didn't even turn up in France.
posted by biffa at 2:44 AM on May 24, 2022

Very enjoyable - far better than the first feature film which, by trying to service every character with their own story, ended up doing a disservice to them all. This one kept it to two very satisfying and well written storylines.
posted by fairmettle at 10:27 PM on February 10, 2023

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