Emma Bell, above) a good dressing down -- at which our young poet stands her ground and gives us an appropriate taste of what is to come. Mr. Davies has always preferred quiet, smooth elisions to any flashy effects in his films. Here his flashiest and most remarkably effective is a family photo session in which the younger Emily morphs subtly into the older Ms Nixon, below. This is brilliantly, beautifully handled, and I'd watch the entire film again just to see it once more.
Keith Carradine (below) seems to grow into a better and stronger actor as he ages. This may be his finest hour playing Emily's stern but loving father who, as much as he is troubled by her behavior appears to somehow secretly treasure it. How Carradine exhibits this is one of the film's wonderful and most subtle accomplishments and also provides the chance for the actor to show a delightfully stern comedic sense. (His "I am smiling" is perhaps the movie's most hilarious line.)
Jennifer Ehle (below, right) plays Emily sister, Vinnie, with such graciousness and joy that you'll want a sister so tender but honest, while Duncan Duff handles the brotherly duties with typically patriarchal entitlement -- a state against which Emily smartly and rightly railed for most of her life.
Jodhi May, shown below right) is given her due, in one scene in particular, in which sapphic love is alluded to but not directly addressed.
Florian Hoffmeister), as per usual for a Davies film, is first-rate.