Up at the Villa (2000) - Rotten Tomatoes

Up at the Villa2000

Up at the Villa (2000)



Critic Consensus: A poor script and an aimless plot keep this film from engaging the audience.

Up at the Villa Photos

Movie Info

A woman left alone by the death of her husband finds her love life has become suddenly and dangerously complicated in this drama. Mary Panton (Kristin Scott Thomas) is a British woman living in Italy in 1938 who has been financially ruined by the death of her husband. Edgar (James Fox), an aging diplomat, asks Mary for her hand in marriage, and while she doesn't love him, she longs for the security of a husband and asks for a few days to consider the proposal. The next evening, Mary is invited to a party by an American socialite known as the Princess (Anne Bancroft); there, Mary meets Rowley Flint (Sean Penn), a rough-hewn and cocky American who is intrigued by her. Mary also feels drawn to Rowley, but their personalities clash, and they end the evening in an argument. Mary impulsively spends the night with Karl (Jeremy Davies), a young musician who played at the party. In the cold light of day, Mary decides that her fling with Karl is best left as a one-night stand, but Karl insists that he's fallen in love with her, and he melodramatically kills himself. Mary, desperate, calls upon Rowley to help her hide the body; he agrees, and soon they are both being questioned by local fascist leader Leopardi (Massimo Ghini) about Karl's disappearance. Up at the Villa was adapted from a novella by W. Somerset Maugham.

Watch it now


Sean Penn
as Rowley Flint
Anne Bancroft
as Princess San Ferdinando
James Fox
as Sir Edgar Swift
Jeremy Davies
as Karl Richter
Derek Jacobi
as Lucky Leadbetter
Massimo Ghini
as Beppino Leopardi
Dudley Sutton
as Harold Atkinson
Roger Hammond
as Colin MacKenzie
Clive Merrison
as Archibald Grey
Linda Spurrier
as Hilda Grey
Ben Aris
as Colonel Trail
Anne Ridler
as Lady Trail
Anne Bell
as Beryl Bryson
Barbara Hicks
as Lulu Good
Gretchen Given
as Isa Mackenzie
Mary Shipton
as Dowager
View All

Critic Reviews for Up at the Villa

All Critics (60) | Top Critics (22)

IF Keenan Ivory Wayans had directed this movie, it would have probably been called Up at the Villa, the English Patient on the Razor's Edge wrote The Letter. It also would have probably been a lot more entertaining than this wan adaptation.

January 1, 2000 | Rating: 2/4

The story line, full of malevolent fascists and romantic entanglements, isn't particularly invigorating.

January 1, 2000

The question is, why should audiences care? Apart from some beautiful scenic photography, this film gives them little reason to.

January 1, 2000

Up at the Villa is just lots of silly intrigue.

January 1, 2000

Beauty and bloodlessness battle it out in every frame of Villa, and no one comes out a winner.

January 1, 2000 | Rating: 2/5 | Full Review…

Spends more time talking about trouble than it does pursuing it.

January 1, 2000

Audience Reviews for Up at the Villa

I had almost forgotten how dashing Sean Penn used to be quite a few years ago. The combination of Kristin Scott Thomas, and Sean Penn, is quite good in this nice little period drama. Slow moving...but nice.

Cynthia S.
Cynthia S.

Super Reviewer

I found the movie interesting. Mary has problems. She has no money, and she has been unlucky in marriage. She is proposed to by an Englishman quite a bit older than her. Now does she marry for convenience or not. Of course a young Sean Penn complicates things, and a local immigrant complicates things even more!

Red Lats
Red Lats

Super Reviewer

Up at the Villa Quotes

There are no approved quotes yet for this movie.

News & Features