Dustin Hoffman has taken to his directorial debut like the proverbial duck to water and has managed to pull together some of the biggest names in British cinema in this all-round ‘nice’ movie.

‘Nice’ is by no means the right word to use for this touching and beautiful movie, but in a world of superlatives, sometimes keeping it simple is the best option. And that’s exactly what Dustin Hoffman has done with Quartet. Set in a home for retired artistes, the terrific ensemble cast, believable storyline and stunning country house backdrop are all the stars of the show.

Billy Connelly provides the laughs as exuberant Wilf; his inappropriate innuendoes bring a little colour to the residents’ lives. Pauline Collins plays Cissy, whose mind is wandering, but who is involved in just about every committee there is and Tom Courtney as Reginald rounds off their cosy trio. 

Cedric (Michael Gambon) is superb as the bossy patriarch who is overseeing the planning of the gala performance, which is designed to make enough money to keep the home going. He thinks all his prayers have been answered when supremo diva Jean (Maggie Smith) checks in, but his hopes are soon dashed when it becomes clear Reginald isn’t happy about her arrival.

Set in the picturesque Hedsor House, Buckingham, Quartet is a surprisingly enjoyable movie which will bring a few tears of joy to those prone to showing emotion.

Written by Debbie McTaggart