Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Brideshead Revisited

Michael Lindsay-Hogg, 1982, 10 hrs (9.3*)
Charles Ryder (Jeremy Irons), a painter, meets Sebastian Flyte (Harry Andrews) at college, and they become best friends, Irons eventually becoming a regular guest at the Brideshead Revisited estate where Andrews grew up; there we meet the rest of the family, and complex romance ensues. From the Evelyn Waugh novel, this is how books should be filmed: in several hours (the reading time?), leaving nothing out. The locations are lush and authentic, the story a bit slow for some, but lyrical and elegant overall.

This major PBS miniseries made Jeremy Irons a star, and won an Emmy for Laurence Olivier with Claire Bloom, Harry Andrews and Irons all also nominated (1 win but 11 nominations overall).Winner of 11 awards, 28 nominations overall, seven BAFTAs, a much more accurate assessment of this film's merit than the Emmys.

A rare treat for those who love literary romanticism. If you like epic romances from novels, be sure to watch the BBC Masterpiece Theater production of A Town Like Alice, set in WW2 and the Australian outback.


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These are the individual film reviews of what I'm considering the best 1000 dvds available, whether they are films, miniseries, or live concerts. Rather than rush out all 1000 at once, I'm doing them over time to allow inclusion of new releases - in fact, 2008 has the most of any year so far, 30 titles in all; that was a very good year for films, one of the best ever.

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