After the Fall
When her brother Simon (William Mickleburgh) went out riding with her husband Gregor (Iain Glen), Lady Elizabeth Dewhurst (Suzanne von Borsody) told them not to go to fast but they didn't listen and after a fall Simon dies. With their marriage having already been strained Elizabeth blames Gregor for her brother's death and orders him to leave. But in doing so she leaves herself open to a crafty solicitor who is willing to manipulate things to get his hands on the family Dewhurst estate. Meanwhile Elizabeth's son Alex (Daniel Sharman) invites his music professor Peter Rosen (Rutger Hauer - The Poseidon Adventure) to visit so that he can research the family's library of rare books leading to a surprising closeness between Peter and Elizabeth.
I'm not sure whether it was the disappointment of discovering that I wasn't going to be watching the 1970's Burt Reynolds movie "Starting Over" but something left me flat when I started watching this 2007 movie which shares the same name. Unfortunately whilst "Starting Over" is a reasonably nice romantic drama it is never anything more than just nice, just charming and just okay even though it has some recognizable names and faces.
The storyline to "Starting Over" is simple enough and two fold with one half focussing on Elizabeth meeting Peter and feeling attracted to him despite being in a malaise over her brother's death. The other half features the unscrupulous solicitor forcing a strap cashed woman who likes Gregor to manipulate him so that the solicitor can than try and get his hands on the family wealth. Sounds a bit far fetched but it provides the drama to go with the romance which it certainly needs. But there is no wow to any of this; it is just a romantic drama which plays out in front of your eyes never really getting you gripped by the unfolding romance or drama.
Now as for the acting well I feel conflicted because I would have never cast Rutger Hauer in a romantic drama yet Hauer is not bad at showing his softer side and is quite charming as the slightly eccentric professor. But whilst the rest of the performances are solid with Suzanne von Borsody equally pleasant as Lady Elizabeth the characters themselves are shockingly dull and are a real struggle to feel any warmth towards or connection with.
What this all boils down to is that "Starting Over" is a romantic drama, it delivers romance and drama but that is it and none of it is gripping or overly romantic or frankly that entertaining.