This film is part of Rentals

The Lonely Passion of Judith Hearne 15 rating

Maggie Smith is astonishing in one of her greatest roles as a spinster who falls for Bob Hoskins’ brash businessman.

Drama 1989 116 mins

Director: Jack Clayton


Maggie Smith is astonishing in a role regarded as her finest since winning the Oscar for The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie in 1969. She plays a middle-aged spinster who’s dedicated her life to the church and caring for her cantankerous aunt, scraping a meagre living giving piano lessons. Believing she’s finally found companionship in the form of her landlady’s brother Madden (Bob Hoskins), a New York-based entrepreneur, Judith begins to exhume her emotions, unaware that she may be misinterpreting his intentions.

Jack Clayton returned to Britain after an absence of 20 years to make his final feature film, which softens the anti-Church sentiment of Brian Moore’s 1956 novel in favour of a piercing character study built around Smith’s glorious performance. The standout cast also includes Ian McNeice, Prunella Scales and a debut film role for Aidan Gillen.