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Import Blu-Ray/Region A Pressing... The Academy Award winner for Best Original Screenplay, Gosford Park is a whodunit as only director Robert Altman could do it. As a hunting party gathers at the country estate, no one is aware that before the weekend is over, someone will be murdered - twice! The police are baffled but the all-seeing, all-hearing servants know that almost everyone had a motive. This critically-acclaimed murder mystery features a who's who of celebrated actors. With a diverse cast of characters - all with something to hide - it'll keep you guessing right to the surprising end. Gosford Park proves that murder can be such an inconvenience.
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November 1932, Sir William McCordle played by Michael Gambon and Lady Sylvia McCordle, played by Kristin Scott Thomas have invited guests for a shooting party. Sir William's sister Constance, the Countess of Trentham played magnificently by Maggie Smith, who depends on an allowance he is constantly threatening to withdraw. Lady Sylvia's sister Louisa, played by Louisa Somerville, who married for money. Louisa's husband, Commander Anthony Meredith , played by Tom Hollander. Lavinia, played by Natasha Wightman, married to Raymond, Lord Stockbridge, played by Charles Dance. Hollywood star Ivor Novello, played by Jeremy Northam. Morris Weissman, played by Bob Balaban, a gay Hollywood producer who has brought along his "valet" Henry Denton played by Ryan Phillippe.
Downstairs, we meet the butler Jennings played by Alan Bates, the housekeeper Mrs. Wilson, played by Helen Mirren, the cook Mrs. Croft , played by Eileen and other valets, maids, grooms and servers. As we know from Downton Abbey, the downstairs is the most fun with the most interesting gossip!
Someone is murdered, an investigation ensues, and the most inept Inspector, played by Stephen Fry enters the picture. We learn a great deal about the murdered person, not from the inspector, but from the gossip and the words not spoken. Kelly MacDonald, of 'Boardwalk ' fame plays a maid to Countess of Tretham. She is the most active in her sly ways of discovering a truth. Is it the real truth?
This is one of the first films looking at the life of the Upstairs, Downstairs group. It is colorful, filled with humor and snide remarks. The sad life of the downstairs folks is fully displayed.
Recommended. prisrob 03-17-13
Each of the guests gathering at Sir William McCorkle's (Michael Gambon) estate for the weekend shooting party has an agenda. Many are financially dependent to one degree or another on the coarse and selfish McCorkle. Rivalries are fought out in politely understated but often vicious conversations. Much of the story is told through the eyes of the servants below stairs, headed by Alan Bates as the head butler and Helen Mirren in a magnificent turn as the housekeeper. Each of the servants has his or her stoutly defended place in the hierarchy of the house, and his or her own secrets, which are suspensefully doled out over the course of the film. Clive Owen, a valet with an attitude, will turn out to have both a leading role and surprising connections with several members of the household. Kelly McDonald, as a young lady's maid learning her trade serving a waspish but financially needy Countess played by Maggie Smith, provides an innocent viewpoint on much of the goings-on.
The murder itself is something of an afterthought, ineptly investigated by a pompous police inspector (in a typically humorous performance by Stephen Fry). Its solution will play out among members of the household in unexpected ways that have little to do with law enforcement.
This is a challenging film to watch. Viewers will want to take advantage of the extra features on this DVD for more insight into what is going and how "Gosford Park" was put together. It is in the end a highly entertaining movie, most apt to appeal to fans of Robert Altman's unique movie-making style and to fans of ensemble British movies.
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no english subtitle, no extras.