A story of business and women's leadership

Directed by Nigel Cole – 2003 – UK – 108 min

Calendar Girls

2022 September 07 | by Arduino Mancini Leadership - Restructuring communication - Women's Stories

How much can sell a 50-year-old women’s calendar?

The answer is: enough to make a business beyond expectation.

Listen to the story.

The film takes place in Knapely, a small town in Yorkshire, UK, where a group of housewives are engaged in various activities through the local branch of a nationally significant women’s association.

The activities they organize are quite repetitive and conventional: cake competition, sale of calendars representing local churches, competitions involving finding oddly shaped vegetables, and outdoor days.

A monotony that does not satisfy many of them, who are in open conflict with the local chairwoman of the association.

When the husband of one of them, Annie, is stricken with leukaemia to die shortly thereafter a new fact intervenes: the friends decide to organize a charity collection to equip the waiting room of the hospital where her husband expired with a new sofa.

Yes, because waiting while seating on the existing one is, more than a comfort, a real punishment.

But the attempt to make the waiting experience more comfortable comes up against harsh reality: the sofa costs around 1,000 pounds, an amount of money very difficult to raise.

At this point Chris, Annie’s best friend and the group’s undisputed leader, has an idea: why not make a calendar of ladies who are all over 50 (and even 60…), taking their clothes off … without actually taking their clothes off?

Here I pause so as not to tell you more about the film: before recommending to pay attention to some key points of the story, I invite you to watch the trailer.



How to watch the film

A film that will make you spend one hundred minutes in joy and provide an opportunity to observe situations that few films dwell on.

Here are, in my opinion, the main ones:

  • The forms that female leadership can take when a woman leads a group of women;
  • What can happen in a family when the wife has the success that the husband is not able to achieve;
  • The forms that conflict can take in a women-only group;
  • The restructuring of the communication context, namely when, as in the scene where a store-bought cake wins a cooking contest, telling an unbelievable truth helps to gain authority;
  • The conflict between extramarital and family commitments.

What about seeing the film just tonight?



Helen Mirren, Julie Walters, John Alderton, Linda Bassett, Annette Crosbie, Philip Glenister, Ciarán Hinds, Celia Imrie, Geraldine James, Penelope Wilton, George Costigan, Graham Crowden, John Fortune, Georgie Glen, Angela Curran, Rosalind March, John-Paul, Macleod Marc Pickering.

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