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This fall, the worldwide phenomenon DOWNTON ABBEY, becomes a grand motion picture event, as the beloved Crawleys and their intrepid staff prepare for the most important moment of their lives. A royal visit from the King and Queen of England will unleash scandal, romance and intrigue that will leave the future of Downton hanging in the balance.
Due to studio restrictions, complimentary passes will not be accepted for any preview screenings or during opening weekend of this film.
On the big screen, the highbrow soap opera’s improbabilities seem sillier and the highlights seem even more brilliant.
Three Stars (out of four)
By Richard Roeper / Chicago Sun-Times
A few years after all those memorable early 20th century British period-piece characters took their curtain call (or so we thought) in an audience-pleasing, unabashedly sentimental series finale, now arrives the “Downton Abbey” movie, which is the cinematic equivalent of taking a trip to Highclere Castle for old times’ sake and taking one last look around.
It’s an extravagant dessert after a six-course meal. Absolutely unnecessary, but still a real treat.
For all its sophistication and pinpoint attention to detail, for all the wonderful performances from one of the great ensemble casts in television history, for all the sharp-tongued dialogue and gorgeous visuals, “Downton Abbey” embraced its soap opera core from the very start — complete with arbitrary deaths, lurid affairs, dramatic marriage proposals, devious criminal doings, multiple instances of elaborate cover-up efforts to hide the biological truth about a child, etc., etc. Magnified to the big screen, some of the more implausible moments seem even more ridiculous.
But that also holds true for the highlights, from a genuinely moving conversation between the Dowager Countess and Lady Mary that reinforces their respective standings as perhaps the two most powerful, take-charge characters in the “Downton” canon, to the visual splendor of Downton Abbey aka Highclere Castle on the big screen.
What a lovely and welcome encore.
An understated and wonderful St. Louis gem, the Hi-Pointe Theatre was built in 1922 at the incredible intersection of Interstate 64, Clayton Road, Clayton Avenue, McCausland Avenue, Forest Avenue, Oakland Avenue and Skinker Boulevard, today also the home of the world’s largest Amoco sign and just at the southwest corner of Forest Park. Continue Reading