Mike Clark from USA Today declared the film \"a fun movie to sit through even when you don't always buy it [...] If the scenery and Lane's charm hook you early on, you'll probably go with the flow. And the movie is all Lane.\" Seattle Times critic Moira MacDonald felt that \"despite the formulaic plot, which seems to belong on the Lifetime channel, Wells has a knack for witty dialogue that keeps things moving along [...] As escapism and as winsome travelogue, Under the Tuscan Sun works just fine.\" Red Reed, writing for The Observer was critical with the film's overplotted third act, but added: \"File [it] under guilty pleasures, but I loved [the film] unconditionally [...] The epitome of what a feel-good movie is supposed to be but rarely is, this one is beautiful to look at and life-affirming to think about, and it doesn't have a pretentious bone in its head.\"
Frances: Do you know the most surprising thing about divorce It doesn't actually kill you. Like a bullet to the heart or a head-on car wreck. It should. When someone you've promised to cherish till death do you part says \"I never loved you,\" it should kill you instantly. You shouldn't have to wake up day after day after that, trying to understand how in the world you didn't know. The light just never went on, you know. I must have known, of course, but I was too scared to see the truth. Then fear just makes you so stupid.
The movie is escapist in the time-honored Hollywood way, inviting us to share the heroine's joy as she moves in, meets the neighbors, and hires illegal workers from Poland to rehab the place. Diane Lane's assignment in many scenes is simply to be delighted. Although she wants to be alone, that would give her no one to talk to, and so the movie surrounds her with colorful and eccentric locals, including Katherine (Lindsay Duncan), who wears big hats and got a lot of good advice from Fellini, and Mr. Martini (Vincent Riotta), a friendly real-estate agent and has a crush on her. There is also a jolly family next door with a grandmother who is heartbroken after being dumped by an e-mail lover from Ecuador. The movie is inspired by Under the Tuscan Sun: At Home in Italy, a best seller by Frances Mayes, unread by me. I gather that Mayes in real life did not have the divorce, etc., and I suspect she also did not experience certain events which are obligatory in movies of this sort, including the accidentally collapsing ceiling and the violent thunderstorm. As lighting flashed, windows banged open, rain poured in and the heavens vented their fury, it occurred to me what convenient storytelling devices thunderstorms are: They allow heroines to get wet, run from room to room in desperation, be surrounded by drama, and wake up the next morning to a perfect day -- all for free, without the slightest need to establish why the storm started or stopped. Any screenwriter seeking an exciting transition between two plot points is safe with a thunderstorm, which doesn't require dialogue or change anything, but gives the audience the impression something is happening.
What redeems the film is its successful escapism, and Lane's performance. They are closely linked. Consider first Diane Lane. Some people are fortunate to have faces that can be decoded as a sign of good character. This has nothing to do with \"beauty\" and more to do with ineffables like smiles and eyes. Diane Lane involves us, implicates us. We don't stand outside her performance, and neither does she. We sign on for the ride, and when cliches happen (like the thunderstorm), in a way we're watching Lane surviving the scene rather than her character surviving the storm. The dynamic is the same. She persuades us that she deserves to be happy. When her character has sex for the first time in a long time, the movie is shy about showing the sex but bold about showing her reaction, as she comes home, bounces up and down on her bed, pumps her fist in the air, and shouts, \"Yes! Yes! I still got it!\" More movie characters feel like that than ever admit it.
That leaves Katherine (Dun-can), who dresses like the flamboyant mistress played by Sandra Milo in Fellini's \"81/2,\" turns up everywhere the plot requires her, shares memories of Fellini which, if they are true, would make her 70ish, and is inexplicable and therefore intriguing. There is absolutely no reason for this character to be in the movie, and really no explanation for who she is and what she wants. We keep waiting for the plot to give her something to do, but she exists firmly at the level of comic relief and ambiguous sexual implication. She's better than a thunderstorm, and I would not do without her.
After her divorce, Frances Mayes (Diane Lane) agrees to take a tour of Tuscany when her best friend Patti (Sandra Oh) buys her a ticket. Frances isn't looking for romantic entanglements. But she ends up with an entanglement of a different kind, impulsively buying an ancient house called Bramasole, which translates into \"yearning for the sun.\" And yes, it is Frances who is yearning for the sun, and yes, the renovation of the house is a metaphor for renovating her spirits. On this emotional journey, she will meet kind souls who will impart life lessons. A free-spirited Englishwoman, a kind local realtor, and three Polish construction workers help her get ready to enter back into life again, and a charming Italian man helps her begin by reminding her that she is capable of loving and being loved. Frances makes a wish for a wedding and a family in the house and when at first it seems that the wedding and the family are not the ones she wished for, she begins to understand that they really are just what she wanted. And she learns that she can help others who yearn for the sun, healing herself at the same time.
The problem is that director/screenwriter Wells tells us a lot more than she shows us. She seems to have no understanding of how to translate a story into film. The movie often seems abrupt and unfinished and the characters are superficially drawn. The script tells us how the characters feel about each other but does not make it matter enough for us to believe in or care about the way their relationships are resolved. Lane brings as much to the material as is humanly possible, but is given little to do beyond looking wistful and wounded. But it is all beguilingly pretty to watch and its message of hope and second chances is beguilingly pretty, too.
You will visit a first-class winery and taste the best selection of Tuscan wines (Chianti DOCG, Chianti Classico, Chianti Riserva, Supertuscan, Brunello, Nobile, Pinot..). Lunch or Dinner there are included. Drive Through Tuscany!
We are looking forward to winding up our cruise from Spain to Italy and we loved the movie under the Tuscan sun! We desperately want to see the locations and sites in the movie and more. Any advice will be greatly apprecited!
An enchanting and lyrical look at the life, the traditions, and the cuisine of Tuscany, in the spirit of Peter Mayle's A Year in Provence. Frances Mayes entered a wondrous new world when she began restoring an abandoned villa in the spectacular Tuscan countryside. There were unexpected treasures at every turn: faded frescos beneath the whitewash in her dining room, a vineyard under wildly overgrown brambles in the garden, and, in the nearby hill towns, vibrant markets and delightful people. In Under the Tuscan Sun, she brings the lyrical voice of a poet, the eye of a seasoned traveler, and the discerning palate of a cook and food writer to invite readers to explore the pleasures of Italian life and to feast at her table.
Rounding out the week are excursions to local sites of interest, including gastronomic visits during our Cortona cooking vacations to taste the local products. Come join us under the Tuscan sun for this once-in-a-lifetime Italy food & tour!
I really recommend Diane Lane's new thriller 'Let Him Go' (co-starring Kevin Costner). It's a thrilling and tense movie that is both beautiful and 'edge of the seat' exciting. Diane Lane was amazing in 'Let Him Go' and I hope this underrated actress gets the Oscar nomination she deserves!
Regardless of which towns you decide to visit on your Tuscany vacation under the Tuscan sun, there will certainly be no shortage of things to do or see. In addition to sightseeing, make a point to have some real experiences in the region such as taking an authentic cooking class, visiting vineyards and participating in local wine tastings, and even taking a pottery making class. However you choose to spend your time, be sure not to miss the most important activity of all: simply letting your soul rest and breathe in the magic of Tuscany.
The circus arrives without warning. No announcements precede it. It is simply there, when yesterday it was not. Within the black-and-white striped canvas tents is an utterly unique experience full of breathtaking amazements. It is called Le Cirque des Rêves, and it is only open at night. But behind the scenes, a fierce competition is underway - a duel between two young magicians, Celia and Marco, who have been trained since childhood expressly for this purpose by their mercurial instructors.
Abandoned by her husband for a younger woman, the literary professor sinks into a despair that keeps her from writing or really living. Holed up in a cheap, San Francisco rental apartment, she wallows in the unhappiness of her current circumstances along with the rest of the cast-offs that live under the same roof. Worried about her listless existence and growing lack of drive, her friends (Sandra Oh, Kate Walsh) finally persuade the straight divorcee to take their tickets for a gay tour of romantic Tuscany. There, while rumbling along the dusty back roads of the countryside in a wildly painted bus, she is drawn to Bramasole, an old villa whose crumbling walls seem to echo her own hopeless state of affairs. Almost without thinking, she makes an offer to the aging home vendor. Soon she is the new owner and sole occupant of the vine covered country cottage. 59ce067264