Tortoise in Love is set in the beautiful English countryside of the Vale of the White Horse in Oxfordshire. The warm-hearted humour of the film is reflected in the unique story of its making: almost the entire village of Kingston Bagpuize in Oxfordshire has been involved in everything from production and costume design to locations and catering.
Tom, gardener at the big house, is not a fast mover with women. In fact he's glacially slow. When beautiful Polish au pair Anya arrives or the summer, Tom falls for her catastrophically like the felling of one of the giant trees he cares for in the manicured grounds. Tom's advisers in matters of the heart is young lad Harry, abandoned by the rich owners of the house to run wild in the gardens. Harry's secret wish is for the Red Arrows to appear at the village fair: Tom's is to win the heart of Anya. Both seem impossible dreams until the whole village decides to lend a hand.
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We recently saw the Tortoise in Love at a film club in New Zealand. I expected it to be B movie because it stated that nearly everyone in an English village had helped to make the film. What a wonderful surprise to discover such a great film! Full of the sort of understated and subtle humour that has made British comedy famous. Well acted and a magnificent script with good one-liners. Very clever! It is set in the sort of English village one normally sees only in film and generates instant nostalgia in all the local poms! There was a nice gentle voiceover which had me chuckling throughout. I didn't recognise a single actor. The casting was superb and all were totally believable. This is the sort of movie that is a sure fire, feel good pick-me-up! It deserves a very wide circulation. I shall certainly add this to our DVD collection for our guests. Heartily recommended.
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