Arterton and Gugu Mbatha Raw
The Brits are brilliant at making wartime whimsy movies
The Guernsey Literary and Potato Pie Society was a real winner recently and following close on its heels and with a similar heroine and cast in tow is the gentle Summerland
Shrieking wartime shabby chic Gemma Arterton plays Alice, a bad tempered single writer of books who explore and discounts folklore and myths. Alice lives in the most beautiful cottage overlooking the Kent white cliffs, is mean to children who refer to her as a witch and lives to write. Unfortunately a young boy Frank, (Lucas Bond) is billeted with her from his London home and their initially prickly relationship rekindles past memories of a failed lesbian affair Alice had in the 1920s.
Crusty writer, lonely boy, angry villagers.....the whole movie isn't original by any means, and in actual fact the movie looks as though it is shot from one field over looking the most impressive of the Dover Cliffs but in Arterton's sensitive hands this is a charming tale of lost love and longing
I loved the powerful little scene when over dinner one night Frank innocently guesses that Alice's past love was a woman.
"Would it bother you if I say you were right?" Alice asks tentatively
And when the little boy replies honesty No
Her pure emotional release literally breaks your heart in its intensity.
Unlike The Guernsey Potato Pie etc Summerland has a small supporting cast which do very little
Tom Courtney turns up as the blustering local schoolmaster and Sian Philips ( I thought she had died) plays a local grandmother who played the moral high ground card.
If you want a bit of light whimsy which will make you cry , go and see Summerland
Arterton and Kent , has never looked better