Seeing the cast of the movie Downton Abbey was like entering a room of old friends that I had not seen in a while. It all came back as I recalled which roles the main characters played and remembered why they left such memorable impressions.
Of course, Maggie Smith, the Countess of Grantham, stole the show with her one-liners and sharp wit as she responded to those around her. She had people in the audience laughing out loud and it brought us together as though we were attending a private viewing party.
The movie opened with the staff in a frenzy because King George V and Queen Mary were coming to the area and would spend one night at Downton Abbey. The staff cleaned, polished and aired out the rooms as they got things ready for their royal visitors.
Mr. Carson had retired but was rehired by Lady Mary because she did not think that the butler Thomas Barrow could pull it off. There were several subplots and too many to share but the mood remained light, festive and even humorous most of the time.
The King and Queen brought their own butler, woman of the house, chef and footmen and the regular Downton staff was appalled by that move. They had nothing to do until they came up with a plan to get the visiting staff out of the way. I will not do too many spoilers, but I left the theater feeling happy that I had made the choice to see this movie.
It was a great way to escape into another world for over two hours. New people met and fell in love; spouses considered breaking up and men secretly met at a gay bar almost putting reputations on the line. The lovable Betsy finally decided to plan her wedding much to Mrs. Patmore’s delight.
Outside of the swift-moving plot, I enjoyed looking at the high fashion statements. The dresses, the gowns with the long attached scarves and the rich jewelry gave me ideas and I will try to replicate certain looks in the future.. One woman asked me if I liked the movie and all I could say was, “Those hats! Oh, the hats. Even the wait staff wore fancy hats.” This was a great vicarious journey back to the 1920’s as I spent time inside of Downton Abbey!
Lynn M. October 12, 2019