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Julian Fellowes moves his hugely popular television series to the big screen, offering audiences another slice of upper class British life.
For five years, Downton Abbey commanded a huge following on both sides of the Atlantic, with audiences revelling in the ups and downs of the upstairs and downstairs of the Crawley family and their employees in a classical English country pile. What the show reinforced was the benefits of tradition over modernity and change. So, it’s fitting that at the heart of the first film adaptation lies the planning behind a royal visit. If the lord and lady of the house (Hugh Bonneville and Elizabeth McGovern) seem hell-bent on ensuring everything is carried off with the precision of a vintage car (of which there are countless examples on display throughout the film), Mary (Michelle Dockery) displays the truculence that made her character so popular throughout the series’ run. And, adding more than a little saltiness to the proceedings is the family’s Dowager Countess (Maggie Smith) whose running feud with a member of the royal cortege (Imelda Staunton) adds an edge to the proceedings. It’s a joyous bounty of riches for fans of the show who might have missed the Crawleys since their departure.