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Tea With Mussolini
Tea With Mussolini
Actors: Maggie Smith, Judi Dench, Joan Plowright, Cher, Lily Tomlin
Director: Franco Zeffirelli
Genres: Indie & Art House, Comedy, Drama, Military & War
PG     1999     1hr 57min

Florence, Italy, on the brink of WWII: it was a time of social unrest and, of course...afternoon tea. Join OscarÂ(r) winner* Cher and an incredible cast of leading ladies as they host this "radiant, beautiful film" (Gene S...  more »


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Movie Details

Actors: Maggie Smith, Judi Dench, Joan Plowright, Cher, Lily Tomlin
Director: Franco Zeffirelli
Creators: Franco Zeffirelli, Clive Parsons, Frederick Muller, Giovannella Zannoni, Marco Chimenz, Pippo Pisciotto, John Mortimer
Genres: Indie & Art House, Comedy, Drama, Military & War
Sub-Genres: Indie & Art House, Lily Tomlin, Drama, Military & War
Studio: MGM (Video & DVD)
Format: DVD - Color,Full Screen,Widescreen,Letterboxed - Closed-captioned
DVD Release Date: 11/23/1999
Original Release Date: 05/14/1999
Theatrical Release Date: 05/14/1999
Release Year: 1999
Run Time: 1hr 57min
Screens: Color,Full Screen,Widescreen,Letterboxed
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaDVD Credits: 1
Total Copies: 0
Members Wishing: 6
MPAA Rating: PG (Parental Guidance Suggested)
Languages: English, French
Subtitles: English

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Member Movie Reviews

Paul P. from PLEASANT PR, WI
Reviewed on 3/26/2013...
This is my favorite movie of all times. It features an all-star cast, with Cher, Dame Judi Dench, Joan Plowright, Maggie Smith, Lilly Tomlin. If you are a fan of strong women characters, this is one to watch.
1 of 1 member(s) found this review helpful.
Mary C. from ERIE, PA
Reviewed on 11/19/2009...
How could any movie with this cast be less than 5 stars! A sweet story about the strength of women, this movie gives us another view of WWII events.
2 of 3 member(s) found this review helpful.
Rammy M. (m5rammy) from VANDALIA, OH
Reviewed on 1/19/2009...
Nice movie (seemed a bit long, but not unbearably)
Good performances by good actresses.
Worth watching.
I think the Synopsis says enough.
1 of 6 member(s) found this review helpful.

Movie Reviews

Magnificent movie!
(5 out of 5 stars)

"My wife insisted we watch this film - since it was not something in which I was interested (dramas and romances are not usually what I prefer to watch)I picked up a book and began reading. Within minutes, I was completely enraptured by this movie and forgot about the book. While a picture with the title TEA WITH MUSSOLINI sounds leisurely, trust me, it's not. It moves forward beautifully telling a true story of English and American women in Italy at the breakout of the war and its effect on them and the Italian child they have all raised together. This is a remarkable film (an epic in small movie disguise)with indelible performances from a perfect cast esp. Cher and Joan Plowright. Why neither they nor this film have appeared on many (if any) best of the year lists is completely mind-boggling to my wife and myself. The play is truly the thing here and director Zeffirelli has done a marvelous job telling a wonderful story (his own life)that's ultimately irristible. Filled with humor, hope and inspiration - words that usually make producers cringe these days but words that still mean the best in great moviemaking. My choice for best film of the year and one of the best of all time. A minor masterpiece. Please give it a try...I don't think you'll be disappointed if you're looking for something with great heart that has something to say about the dignity of the human spirit. Better than LIFE IS BEAUTIFUL. A gem!"
Charming entertainment but not much depth
Linda Linguvic | New York City | 02/09/2002
(4 out of 5 stars)

"Based loosely on the autobiography of the director, Franco Zeffinelli, this film is a light frothy comedy about a serious subject. It is the story of Italy in the 1930s and Mussolini's rise to power. It is also the story of the young illegitimate son of a textile merchant who gets adopted by a group of eccentric aging Englishwomen living in Florence. The delightful cast includes English Maggie Smith as a dowager grande dame who looks down her nose with disdain at everything around her, Judy Dentch as an dotty art lover, Joan Plowright as a sensible motherly type and Lily Tomlin as an a forthright lesbian. Surrounded by the art and grandeur of Florence, these ladies love Italy and refuse to believe that their lives will change under the darkening clouds of fascism. Into this mix comes Cher as the rich American ex-chorus girl who marries rich men wears beautiful outfits. I recommend this video for what it is -- a couple of hours of light and charming entertainment. Florence is beautiful, the costumes are great, the acting is good, and the war is sanitized. However, if you are looking for depth and complexity, you won't find it here."
A film that stirs the heart
holden28 | usa | 01/17/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)

"The film "Tea with Mussolini" deals with complex issues in such a subtle way that it is easy to dismiss if the viewer overlooks the intriquite relationships of the characters. How the characters evolve from being self-involved (their love of the arts and formalities) to becoming caring individuals and creating bonds that overcome the heirarchies of the social class structure due to race, nationality, war and a young boy that pulls them together. Luca a young Italian boy copes with having no family due to being an illigitamate child in picturesque Italy during The Second World War. Lucas mothers death and his father's refusal to take him into his care due to a wife that would not accept him lead him to find a new family with his father's secretary (Joan Plowright) and her sociatal peers The Scorpioni (The Scorpions) named for the groups sharp wit and poisonous bite. This group takes young Luca into their privliged clique and shares in the education and introduces young Luca to The Arts which is the groups passion. Little do they know that by doing this they have began on a road to self change that will alter thier view on the world, thier friendships and detestations of others in the group. This film is a story of compassion, friendship, art, family, accepatance, change, egos, jeolousy and shows the letting go of beliefs and the opening of hearts. The cast is first rate with the likes of Cher, Maggie Smith, Joan Plowright, Lily Tomlin and Judi Dench along with the perfect casting of the character Luca played by Baird Wallace (Luca: teenager) and Charlie Lucas (Luca: child) both of these fine young actors will grab the viewers heart and make him want to help with the caring of and the education of this heart grabbing character. Luca's troubles will affect the viewer and pull at one's heartstrings. Baird Wallace is talented young actor that holds his own and deserves praise and notice from the industry. Recomendations: Buy this film, it is a film with grit and emotions that will make you examine your own life and wish that you could have been as bleesed as Luca had."