26 thoughts on “Top Five Awkward Dinner Scenes

  1. The dinner scene in Gosford Park when Elsie the maid has an accidental emotional outburst at her mistress and reveals she was more or less the only person to care about the murdered man. Awks.

    1. Oh, lord, I watched that for the fifth or sixth time a few weeks ago. A beautifully timed and so very major faux pas. I miss Robert Altman.

    1. My family is getting suspicious of how I keep getting picked for Christmas as my work holiday… So, I fully understand.

  2. Sadly, Lord Grantham’s awesome spew ruined a vintage gold lame gown worn by Lady Grantham. He very nearly overshot the tarps that were protecting the carpets in the very real dining room at Highclere!

    1. When writing about this scene, I have to say that to me it is voluntary funny, because of the unfitting music and the bad performance of the actress, who plays Lady Grantham. It looks like a parody.

  3. The thing that makes Mr. Collins funny is that, at heart, I don’t think he is a bad man. He is just this scared, lost soul who is convinced that higher born people know better and should run his whole life. Elizabeth wouldn’t have had a bad life with him if she had chosen to marry him. It wouldn’t have been romantic, it wouldn’t have been a laugh a minute but it wouldn’t have been torture. And I’m sure Collins would have have run his life on her every word.

      1. Charlotte recognizes that Mr. Collins is a fool and he will certainly annoy and embarrass her for the rest of their lives togethe. But she also sees there is no vice or malice in him, he will never be deliberately cruel to her or make life with him intolerable. And it’s not like poor Charlotte doesn’t have plenty of experience suffering fools, we meet her parents and siblings. Mr. Collins might well be considered an improvement! And at least there’s only one of him!

  4. If they EVER film the Dinner Party from A Civil Campaign… it will top them all.
    “Mother, Father, I’d like you to meet–she’s getting away!”

  5. What comes to mind is the formal court dinner in Nicholas and Alexandra. Beautiful clothes, attentive staff but poor Alix is frozen by her shyness. I believe she plasters a smile on her face but isn’t very convincing. And at a ball celebrating her mother-in-law’so birthday. Poor Minnie and Alix.

  6. Gosford Park has a FABULOUSLY awkward dinner scene. Also I would love to see an article on that movie; it’s a wonderful upstairs/downstairs whodunnit with an all star cast.

  7. The dinner party wrapping up the dig in the English Patient. Ralph Fiennes being ‘terribly sorry’, everyone else torn between watching the train wreck and trying to pretend it’s not happening and trying to change the topic.

  8. The dinner party held by John Thornton and his mother Hannah, in Episode 2 of 2004’s “North & South”. It started out well. It ended differently. Especially for the Margaret Hale character.

  9. In Young Victoria when the King calls out Victoria’s mother for ‘stealing’ rooms at the palace and her mother gets up and storms out. Poor Victoria was mortified.

  10. As I recall, there’s more than one good food scene in “Alice Adams,” with poor Katharine Hepburn as Alice trying her best to be socially acceptable/ordinary.

  11. Mr. Collins is the best! (Or the worst, depending on how you look at it.) David Bamber was brilliant. And I love Lydia’s eyeroll!

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