Lisa Schwarzbaum
September 20, 2006 AT 04:00 AM EDT

Keeping Mum

type
Movie
Current Status
In Season
mpaa
R
runtime
90 minutes
Limited Release Date
09/15/06
performer
Rowan Atkinson, Maggie Smith, Kristin Scott-Thomas
director
Niall Johnson
distributor
THINKFilm
author
Niall Johnson, Richard Russo
genre
Comedy

We gave it a B-

She’s no Mary Poppins: Maggie Smith is more like a cheery Angel of Death in the light black comedy Keeping Mum, one of those dutifully daft British diddles (complete with Rowan Atkinson as a vicar) that, except for the blunt sex talk, might have been constructed decades ago. Dame Maggie is waggish as a mad housekeeper who finds final solutions to one family’s domestic problems, and it’s fun to watch swanlike Kristin Scott Thomas pretend to be a frumpy vicar’s wife. As a lecherous American golf pro, Patrick Swayze flashes sculpted abs — because he can.

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