It is difficult to say something original about this film, something that hasn't been said 10 times before.
But it *is* excellent.
I had heard it was a comedy, that you couldn't stop laughing, well it isn't exactly true. There *are* some very funny jokes and lines, but overall the movie is rather tragic. Somes storylines definitely prevent you from laughing and may even leave you a bit down. Fortunately, the pace is just right, and you never stay on one depressing thing for too long - everything stays emotionnal and personnal without falling in pathetically melodramatic stuff.
The actors are of course excellent. Thomson as a desperate spinster and Laurie as a sober jingle writer are hilarious. Slattery is very good as well but his character is so irritating that it's difficult to say you "loved him" in this film. Staunton is wonderful in her overprotecting mother part, and carries out alone a good part of the tragic dimension of the film. Fry is wonderful of course though he doesn't seem to be really "acting" : It looks just like his old self -except that he is not "in the vagina business" at all in reality, neither does he have aids or is an English lord -.
Anyway, this film is definitely a must-see, too bad the dvd in itself sucks so much. No subtitles, and no chapter division ! It's the first time I've ever seen that in a dvd. As for the image quality, it is like watching a VHS...