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WHERE ANGELS FEAR TO TREAD – Rachel Portman

March 10, 2022 Leave a comment

THROWBACK THIRTY

Original Review by Jonathan Broxton

Where Angels Fear to Tread was one of several cinematic adaptations of novels by the British writer E. M. Forster in the 1980s and early 1990s, the others being A Passage to India, A Room With a View, and Howard’s End. Like all of Forster’s work it is a scathing examination of the British class system, its rigid mores and morals, and how those formal rules butt up against the passions bubbling underneath the proverbial stiff upper lips. This film adaptation is directed by Charles Sturridge and stars Helen Mirren as Lilia, a recent widow who travels from London to Tuscany in 1905 with her young companion Caroline (Helena Bonham-Carter). Shockingly, Lilia falls in love with a handsome and roguish Italian named Gino (Giovanni Guidelli), marries him, and falls pregnant, much to the dismay of her conservative and status-obsessed siblings (Rupert Graves and Judy Davis) back in England. As the two halves of the family fight over Lilia’s perceived unsuitable relationship, especially as it relates to the future of her unborn child, the disagreements quickly turn to tragedy for all involved. The title comes from the famous line in Alexander Pope’s 1711 poem ‘An Essay on Criticism’: for fools rush in where angels fear to tread. Read more…