30th Anniversary of A Room With a View

By Abigail Ramos (Syracuse University)

This past Thursday night (Oct. 5th, 2017), Academy Award winning director James Ivory was celebrated at the Cinema Odeon in Florence for the 30th anniversary of his beloved film adaptation of author E.M. Forster’s novel A Room with a View. Also in attendance were the film’s two main leads, Helena Bonham-Carter and Julian Sands. Upon its initial release in 1985, A Room With a View was nominated for eight Academy Awards and won a BAFTA for Best Film.

The event itself was incredible, to say the least. The line spread out into the streets and people showed up dressed in formal wear, all excited to see the movie, but probably more excited to see the stars of the film. Once everyone was seated, it was only a matter of time for the special guests to arrive, and once they did, the people on the ground floor flocked to the back to take pictures of the film’s famed actors.

Bonham-Carter placed a kiss on Ivory’s cheek, leaving a mark that she tried her best to wipe off.

“It’s love!” she said, as she smiled for the cameras and the audience that was building up in front of her. She was persistent in trying to get her lipstick off Ivory’s cheek, and it made for a tender moment captured on camera and a display of the closeness and admiration that the two have for each other.

Later, a standing ovation was given to Sands, and in that moment, it was clear how much people, especially the citizens of Florence, loved him and his work. A Room With a View tells the story of 18-year-old Lucy Honeychurch (Bonham-Carter) and her journey in finding herself inside the breathtaking city of Florence and outside of the confines of London as the Victorian era comes to an end. With beautiful shots of Florence and an intertwined love story at the center of it all, Ivory’s adaptation brings out the emotions and struggles of the complex characters that Forster originally wrote,  nearly 70 years before the film’s release.

Once the photo op and the small Q&A portion with film critic Piera Detassis were finished, they dimmed the lights and the screening began. As the opening credits began to roll, the audience applauded as the names of Ivory, Bonham-Carter, and Sands showed up on the screen. As the movie played, iconic scenes (such as Lucy and George’s first kiss in the poppy field) were met with even more applause. The audience clearly enjoyed the film, and, following the end of the movie, another standing ovation was given to Ivory and the actors present.

The love for this movie, as well as the love for Ivory, were practically tangible in that room. The celebration of the 30th anniversary of A Room With a View continues up until Oct. 8th, where the Cinema Odeon will show the best films of James Ivory, from Mr. and Mrs. Bridge to a final showing of  A Room With a View.


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