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I'm not a film critic, but I'll tell you what I think about the movies I watch. I enjoy understanding the history behind the movies we watch, as well as the collaborative effort necessary to produce movies.

The Englishman Who Went Up a Hill But Came Down a Mountain

The Englishman Who Went Up A Hill But Came Down a Mountain 1The Englishman Who Went Up a Hill But Came Down a Mountain (1995)

Directed by Christopher Monger

Screenplay by Ifor David Monger

Starring: Hugh Grant, Tara Fitzgerald, Colm Meaney, Ian McNeice

Reginald Anson (Grant) and George Garrad (McNeice) are English cartographers assigned to measure the hills and mountains of Wales. When they come to the small town of Ffynnon Garw they begin their work in measuring the town’s mountain. To the dismay of the town’s people, their measurements have reduced the mountain to a hill, coming up short of the required height. Now the town, led by Morgan the Goat (Meaney), is working hard to convince the men to reconsider, and they’re going to great lengths to get their mountain back.

The Englishman Who Went Up A Hill But Came Down a Mountain 3Christopher Monger (Temple Grandin) worked on this film both as a writer and director. The screenplay was written by Christopher Monger’s father, Ifor David Monger. The cast includes Hugh Grant (About a Boy), Tara Fitzgerald (Sirens), Colm Meaney (The Last of the Mohicans), and Ian McNeice (Valkyrie).

The Englishman Who Went Up A Hill But Came Down a Mountain 6This movie is a unique piece of historical fiction based on a fun and somewhat ridiculous premise. Thankfully, the whole story is played out with World War I in the backdrop. This provides a level of seriousness to the story that keeps things from being too cheesy. The story is mainly a comedy, but the dramatic aspects of the film work nicely. Overall, this film suffers from a lack of substance that gave way to way too much filler. The dialogue is witty at times, but nothing that overcomes the lack of momentum in the story. This is a good story, but far from great.

The Englishman Who Went Up A Hill But Came Down a Mountain 8The acting in this movie is pretty predictable considering the cast. Hugh Grant does a good job as the awkward Englishman, a role he’s played a few times before. (Love Actually, Notting Hill, Sense and Sensibility) Tara Fitzgerald, Colm Meaney, and Ian McNeice also do a nice job with their roles in this one. If anything, the actors worked nicely with the lack of material that they were given. The rest of the supporting cast do a good job creating the dozens of unique characters in the small town in Wales.

The Englishman Who Went Up A Hill But Came Down a Mountain 5Overall, this movie relies far too much on the expected charm of the story. The acting is good, but there wasn’t enough to work with to make it great. The movie will work for fans of Hugh Grant or the other bigger names in the cast. I would also recommend this to fans of period films or historical fiction. I give this one 2.7 out of 5 stars.

Rating: PG

Running Time: 99 Minutes


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