This drama about a romance writer's experiences at a Swiss resort opens with the protagonist, Edith Hope, arriving at the Hotel du Lac from London, where she had just jilted her fiancŽ, Geoffrey, at the altar. At the hotel, she writes letters to a married man, David Simmonds, with whom she was having an affair before her engagement; meets several hotel guests, who later become inspiration for characters in her novel; and experiences growth and inner development as a person. The hotel guests include Mrs. Pusey and her daughter, Jennifer, who are squandering the late Mr. Pusey's money on shopping; Madame de Bonneuil, an elderly countess living out her final days in the splendor of the hotel; and Philip Neville, a distinguished yet jaded older gentleman who takes an interest in Edith. Neville tells Edith he knows about her profession and nom de plume, Vanessa Wilde; he also pinpoints her problems. Interwoven with the action are flashbacks showing Edith's first meeting with David and the passionate relationship that develops between them; her acceptance of Geoffrey's marriage proposal and her change of heart while en route to church on her wedding day; and her subsequent encounter with David that same day. Back in the present, Edith and Neville are on a day cruise when Neville proposes a marriage of convenience, one that would allow them to have affairs with other people. By the time the ship docks, Edith accepts Neville's offer and immediately returns to the hotel to write David a farewell letter. Leaving her room the following morning to mail it, she sees Neville sneaking out of Jennifer's room. Edith rips the letter up and instead wires David of her imminent return to London.


  • DATE: October 17, 1986 Friday 8:00 PM
  • RUNNING TIME: 1:14:03
  • COLOR/B&W: Color
  • CATALOG ID: T89:0259
  • GENRE: Drama
  • SERIES RUN: A&E - TV, 1986


    • Sue Birtwistle … Producer
    • Foster Giles … Director
    • Christopher Hampton … Writer
    • Anita Brookner … Based on the Novel by
    • Carl Davis … Composer, Conductor
    • Anna Massey … Cast, Edith Hope
    • Denholm Elliott … Cast, Philip Neville
    • Googie Withers … Cast, Mrs. Pusey
    • McKenzie, Julia (See also: McKenzie, Julie N.) … Cast, Jennifer Pusey
    • Patricia Hodge … Cast, Monica
    • Irene Handl … Cast, Madame de Bonneuil
    • Barry Foster … Cast, David Simmonds
    • Anne Firbank … Cast, Penelope Milne
    • Geoffrey Chater … Cast, Harold Webb
    • Jeffrey Wickham … Cast, Geoffrey Long