My House in Umbria

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"Carpe diem."
"I'm never really sure what that means."
"Oh, seize the day. Embrace the present. Enjoy life while you got the chance."
"Carpe diem. I'll remember that."

My House in Umbria is a 2003 television drama mystery film, about a romance novelist who, after surviving a terrorist attack on an Italian train line, opens up her home and solitary life to a trio of stranded survivors.

Directed by Richard Loncraine. Written by Hugh Whitemore, based on the 1991 novel "Two Lives" by William Trevor.
When you open your door to strangers, you never know who might come in. (Taglines)

Emily Delahunty[edit]

  • [voice over] I was the only one who had not lost a loved one, having none to lose.
  • What a strange and mysterious thing it is love. To be without it is like being deprived of oxygen. I had no love when I was a child. The people who brought me up were not my parents. I was still very young when they told me the truth. My real parents were travelling entertainers. They had no use for a child. "Not the sort of people you'd care for", said the mother who wasn't my mother. See, the people I lived with couldn't have children, they bought me. [laughs] Isn't that astonishing? bought me. like a cut priced sofa. You know, the father who wasn't my father, used to take me to the Gaiety Cinema on Sunday afternoons, there'd be a comedy short, Laurel and Hardy, or Charlie Chase, and then they'd go into the main features. Oh, I loved westerns. I loved the canyons, and the ranches, and the feathered Indians that fell one by one. The saddles that became pillows beneath the stars. For awhile, I think they were fond of me. But as I grew older, things began to change. I was ten when she told me the truth, the mother who wasn't my mother. "£20, that's what he'd give", she said. "Rough type of people", she said, "to profit from a baby". [laughs] "50 they ask. 20 he'd give". As soon as I was old enough, I ran away. I ran, and I ran, and I ran. All over the world. London, America, Egypt, Morocco.
  • [voice over, on Thomas Riversmith] I felt he was in someway distressed or preoccupied. I wanted to reach across the table and touch the back of his hand. But naturally, I didn't. He hardly touched his drink, that saddened me. Alcohol in moderation can be a great loosener for a man like Mr. Riversmith.
  • You're a man who always sleeps, Mr. Riversmith. You'll sleep your way to the grave. Hell is where men like you wake up, Mr. Riversmith, [tearfully] with flames curling around their naked legs.
  • We all need forgiveness, Quinty.
  • I maybe dead next month. The moon may have crashed into the Earth. Who knows what dreadful things may come to pass. But at the moment, I'm happy. What else matters.

Dialogue[edit]

We all need forgiveness, Quinty.
Thomas Riversmith: What time is it?
Mrs. Emily Delahunty: Not yet midnight.
Thomas Riversmith: Is something the matter?
Mrs. Emily Delahunty: No, no, no. Nothings wrong. I thought we might share a farewell glass. [puts two glasses and a bottle of grappa on a small table, pours them both a drink]
Thomas Riversmith: [annoyed] I was sound asleep.
Mrs. Emily Delahunty: We have to talk.
Thomas Riversmith: What talk?
Mrs. Emily Delahunty: [brings the glass over to Mr. Riversmith] This time tomorrow you'll be gone. Just a sip, just a sip.
Thomas Riversmith: [takes the glass] Mrs. Delahunty, we have nothing to talk about.
Mrs. Emily Delahunty: It's unkind to call me Mrs. Delahunty, Tom. It's not even my real name.
Thomas Riversmith: The fact that my sisters child spends some time in your house after the tragedy, doesn't entitle you to harass me.
Mrs. Emily Delahunty: [worriedly, on Werner] You know, I've been thinking about him so much, Tom. Why did he do it? What terrible anger must've possessed him?
Thomas Riversmith: What are you talking about?
Mrs. Emily Delahunty: But he loved her. I really believed that. I mean, he may have agreed to help them. But I saw how he stroked her arm in the railway carriage. He was in love with her, Tom. Truly in love.
Thomas Riversmith: [concerned] Are you talking about the German boy?
Mrs. Emily Delahunty: You know, he must've been lead into it. [sits down] He seemed so mild, so gentle.
Thomas Riversmith: He made some kind of confession to you? Is that what you're saying?
Mrs. Emily Delahunty: [handing Tom his glass] You know, I'd love it, Tom, if you'd take just a sip of grappa...
Thomas Riversmith: [angrily] No, no, I don't want any goddamn grappa! Why do you keep pushing drinks on me? All hours of the day and night, you seem to think I need a drink. You make appalling accusations and then you...
Mrs. Emily Delahunty: I only said it might be so. None of us can be certain about anything. Only the perpetrators, we both know that.
Thomas Riversmith: Well, do you have any grounds for saying what you said about the German?
Mrs. Emily Delahunty: [pours herself another drink] I had a dream.
Thomas Riversmith: A dream?
Mrs. Emily Delahunty: And I see it. In his face. In his soul.
Thomas Riversmith: It's a dream! That's all the evidence you have?
Mrs. Emily Delahunty: What other evidence do you need? I mean, given the right circumstances, we're all of us capable of the most appalling things. And even if Werner is guilty, there's the chance of redemption in a child's forgiveness [Tom angrily gets out of bed]. And for Aimee, a way back to herself in offering it!
Thomas Riversmith: [puts on his dressing gown] That is preposterous! How can you possibly suggest that Aimee should have some kind of friendship with the boy you claim might have murdered her family? It's monstrous.
Mrs. Emily Delahunty: Tom, Tom, now you listen to me. Listen. Do you know the Italian word colpa? Hm? [lights herself a cigarette] It means guilt. Now, we all of us feel colpa about something. It's a burden we all have to bear. Do not, I beg you, let colpa stand in the way of your actions.
Thomas Riversmith: See, I don't understand what the hell you're talking about.
Mrs. Emily Delahunty: I think you do. You feel colpa, because you never made peace with your sister. And because of that, you feel obliged to take the child back with you.
Thomas Riversmith: For God's sake!
Mrs. Emily Delahunty: Be honest with yourself. Admit it, Tom.
Thomas Riversmith: Please! Just stop it, will you?! [sits down on the bed]
Mrs. Emily Delahunty: Look, Aimee- Aimee is happy here. She's as happy as she can be, at the moment. Don't destroy her one chance of happiness because of your own sense of guilt.
[pause]
Mrs. Emily Delahunty: You haven't touched your grappa. A drink would do you good. [brings over the drink to him]
Thomas Riversmith: No, I don't want any... [accidentally knocks the glass of grappa over him]
Mrs. Emily Delahunty: Oh, [drunkenly laughs] whoops, sorry. [sits down next to Riversmith]
Thomas Riversmith: You're extremely drunk.
Mrs. Emily Delahunty: [laughs] Oh, it's easy to say that. Easy way for a man to turn his back.
Thomas Riversmith: Oh, keep away from me. Don't come any closer. Just... stay away. Just leave me alone, Mrs. Delahunty. I want to go to sleep.
Mrs. Emily Delahunty: You're a man who always sleeps, Mr. Riversmith. You'll sleep your way to the grave. [gets up to leave] Hell is where men like you wake up, Mr. Riversmith, [tearfully] with flames curling around their naked legs.

Taglines[edit]

  • When you open your door to strangers, you never know who might come in.
  • Every survivor has a story.

Cast[edit]

External links[edit]

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