Mothering Sunday (2022) is a slow-paced, sensuous, period romance set in the years following World War I. Based on a novel by Graham Swift, the film centres on Jane Fairchild (Odessa Young), a young woman working as a maid in an English country manor. Jane is in love with Paul (Josh O’Connor), the son of the house’s owners, but he is betrothed to another woman. When Jane is given the day off on Mother’s Day, she and Paul spend the day together, their passion reigniting. However, events take a turn that will change both of their lives forever.
The acting by both Young and O’Connor is excellent, and they have a natural chemistry that makes their scenes together sizzle. The movie is let down by the pace, which is slow and leisurely to the point of being sluggish. The dialogue is often stilted, and the characters seem to exist in a bubble, completely cut off from the harsh realities of the world outside. And be warned, inside this “bubble”, there are multiple sex scenes, full-frontal nudity, and adult themes. So, if any of these offend you, you may wish to choose not to see the movie. Overall, though, Mothering Sunday is a beautifully shot film that will satisfy fans of romance novels and movies. Just don’t expect anything too ground-breaking. If you can manage the slow pace, Mothering Sunday is a beautiful and heart-wrenching love story.
(In cinemas in Australia – check your movie guide for your local show times.)