Keeping Mum

December 2nd, 2005


Keeping Mum

No valid json found

Still of Kristin Scott Thomas in Keeping MumStill of Rowan Atkinson in Keeping MumStill of Rowan Atkinson and Kristin Scott Thomas in Keeping MumStill of Kristin Scott Thomas in Keeping MumStill of Patrick Swayze in Keeping MumStill of Maggie Smith in Keeping Mum

A pastor preoccupied with writing the perfect sermon fails to realize that his wife is having an affair and his children are up to no good.

Release Year: 2005

Rating: 6.8/10 (15,345 voted)

Critic's Score: 53/100

Director: Niall Johnson

Stars: Rowan Atkinson, Kristin Scott Thomas, Maggie Smith

Walter Goodfellow, the vicar for the small English country parish of Little Wallop, has allowed his marriage to Gloria go stale and he is so detached from his family that he has not taken notice that his 17-year-old daughter Holly is going through a succession of inappropriate relationships with unsuitable boyfriends and his son Petey fears going to school due to being bullied. Out of desperation for affection, Gloria begins to fall for the advances of Lance, the American golf pro that is giving her "private" lessons. The problems upsetting the family start to fade away after Grace Hawkins, the new housekeeper, arrives and starts tending to matters as an older, and rather darkly mysterious version of Mary Poppins.

Writers: Richard Russo, Niall Johnson

Rowan Atkinson - Walter Goodfellow
Kristin Scott Thomas - Gloria Goodfellow
Maggie Smith - 'Grace Hawkins'
Patrick Swayze - Lance
Tamsin Egerton - Holly Goodfellow
Toby Parkes - Petey Goodfellow
Liz Smith - Mrs. Parker
Emilia Fox - Rosie Jones
James Booth - Mr. Brown
Patrick Monckton - Bob - Pond Workman
Rowley Irlam - Ted - Pond Workman
Vivienne Moore - Mrs. Martin
Murray McArthur - Vicar's Convention Master of Ceremonies
Morgan Gower - Reverend Campbell
Rupert Simonian - Billy Martin the Bully

Taglines: Schweigen ist Silber - Vergraben ist Gold (Silence is silver, but burying is golden)

Release Date: 2 December 2005

Filming Locations: Cornwall, England, UK

Opening Weekend: £645,886 (UK) (4 December 2005) (306 Screens)

Gross: $1,618,957 (USA) (21 January 2007)

Technical Specs

Runtime:  | Turkey: (TV version)

Did You Know?

The film is dedicated to James Booth (Mr. Brown).

Continuity: The blue Volvo family car parked outside of school has mud on its front-right door, but one minute later it's clean.

Grace Hawkins: You know, men do sometimes lose their way, dear. I mean, Walter is a sweet soul, but he's a bit slow-witted like the rest of them.
Gloria Goodfellow: So you were married too?
Grace Hawkins: Yes I was. A long time ago.
Gloria Goodfellow: Did he lose his way?
Grace Hawkins: With a little help from another woman.
Gloria Goodfellow: Ohh...
Grace Hawkins: Completely lost his head over her.

User Review

Great black comedy reviving a British tradition

Rating: 8/10

This great black comedy in the British tradition appeals to all generations. I went with my mother, wife and son and we all enjoyed it very much.

My 20-year-old son, who was not accustomed to this type of dark humour, was quite startled at how murder was portrayed in an off-hand, humorous way. I felt it was a revival of a genre going back to the "Wrong Box" [1966] and before. This film does not dwell on the violence, the gore, the sentiment or the psychological aspects of murder. It seems to be standard fare for most films but it didn't seem appropriate here.

As much I respect, Rowan Atkinson as a comedian, I was concerned that this film would be in the Mr Bean or Black Adder vein. In fact, I was pleasantly surprised to find that Rowan Atkinson is a very good actor. Most of the time, he played his role as an absent-minded vicar in an understated and sometimes quite touching way. Mr Bean fans will have their moments. There's also lots of innuendo combined with more subtle humour.

Maggie Smith is as ever excellent. The rest of the cast play their archetypal characters or in the case of Patrick Swayze's caricature well.

Though I was able to predict the overall plot, the story is entertaining and there is a gentle message about marital problems, the generation gap and hypocrisy. The scenery mainly in the Isle of Man and partly in Cornwall is stunning.

I recommend it highly.


Comments are closed.