Maggie Smith in Keeping Mum
In Niall Johnson’s minor but enjoyable British black comedy, Maggie Smith is a Mary Poppins–like houseservant with a penchant for homicide who’s the new hire, out in the provinces, of a British family in distress. The dad (Rowan Atkinson), a dry country vicar, has found God and lost his taste for the flesh. His winsome, sexually frustrated wife (Kristin Scott Thomas) battles daily with her nympho daughter (Timson Egerton) while pondering whether to become involved with a hot-bodied but untrustworthy American golf instructor (Patrick Swayze). The servant brings the family together, solving everyone’s problems through some deftly arranged murders. A fine cast of reliable British actors keeps Keeping Mum bouncing along, and as the co-screenwriter American novelist Richard Russo (Empire Falls) shows his skill as a farceur.
On the Web
Keeping Mum's Web site: http://www.keepingmumthemovie.com/