As the wife is a huge fan of the TV show not going to see Downton Abbey: A New Era was ever an option. To be honest, I like the show and thought that the 2019 movie was a lot of fun. I was not sure a second theatrically-released movie was necessary to tell you the truth, but I ended up having even more fun with this one than I did the first.
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Downton Abbey: A New Era Review
Once again, the creator of the show, Julian Fellowes is handling the script, but we have a new director. Simon Curtis is the man behind the camera this time around, replacing Michael Engler who I felt did a great job with the first movie. While this has the subtitle, A New Era, this is most certainly a movie made for people who are familiar with the characters.
I would not say you have to be a Downton Abbey expert like my wife, but at the very least you will want to have seen the first movie before jumping in here. One of the most surprising things about this movie was the inclusion of Maggie Smith. In the previous movie, Violet Crawley was quite ill so I was sure she would have passed away here, but that is not the case and she has a really prominent role.
The plot of Downton Abbey: A New Era is a lot of fun and actually split between two main storylines. Lady Grantham (Maggie Smith) has mysteriously inherited a home in the South of France and some of the family make a pilgrimage there to check the place out and also get to the bottom of the strangeness of it all.
I found this to be fun and I was quite invested in what was going on. However, it is the other plot that I think is the most fun. Downton Abbey is in need of some repairs and one way to make a bit of money to get this done is by renting the place out to a movie studio wanting to film a movie here. Seeing the people in the house trying to get used to the place becoming a movie set was something that gave me a real chuckle.
However, there is also another interesting plot here in that movie star Guy Dexter (played awesomely by Dominic West) has taken a real “liking” to Thomas Barrow which I thought was fun. While there is a big cast here as you would expect from a Downton Abbey movie, you never feel like any of the main cast are getting shortchanged when it comes to screentime.
As is the case with the last movie and also the TV show, visually, Downton Abbey: A New Era is gorgeous to look at. The costumes, the sets, the South of France – it all looks amazing and I am glad that my wife told me we were watching it in the movie theatre! To be honest, the TV show looked great, but this and the movie before it really does make the time period come to life. I am not sure if it is the bigger budget or it being on the big screen, but it looks great.
If you have tried to watch Downton Abbey before and did not like it, you will not like this. This is a movie that is made for the fans and in that regard, it succeeds phenomenally well. The first movie is good, but this one is just an all-around better movie. It feels like there is more going on and it is just a really fun watch.
- There are two main plots throughout the movie
- It makes you laugh and can also make you sad as well
- As you would expect, the performances are fantastic
- Visually, this is just a gorgeous looking movie and the costumes and sets are amazing
- I think the “New Era” tag may make some people think it is a reboot or something like that
- There is nothing here to win over someone who has tried the show or watched the last movie but did not like either of them