The Scarlet Letter (1979)

TV Mini-Series  -   -  Drama
5.8
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In the 17th century Massachusetts, a married women, whose husband is missing, has a child with the local pastor. The puritanical residents of her town condemn her to carry the Scarlet Letter of shame. Then the husband shows up.

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Title: The Scarlet Letter (1979– )

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Won 1 Primetime Emmy. See more awards »

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Cast

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 Nathaniel Hawthorne (unknown episodes)
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Storyline

In the 17th century Massachusetts, a married women, whose husband is missing, has a child with the local pastor. The puritanical residents of her town condemn her to carry the Scarlet Letter of shame. Then the husband shows up.

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2 April 1979 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Der scharlachrote Buchstabe  »

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(4 episodes)

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1.33 : 1
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Trivia

The filmmakers' decision to outfit Hester Prynne with a gold letter "A" was sharply criticized at the time of the mini-series' premiere on P.B.S. as author Nathaniel Hawthorne was quite specific about the "scarlet letter" being red-colored. In the novel, the adjective "scarlet" wasn't only used in the symbolic sense (scarlet meaning "grossly and glaringly offensive" in the sense of "sinning in flagrant and scarlet fashion" [deriving from the use of the word in Isaiah 1:18 & Revelation 17:1-6], thus being associated with sexual immorality); the letter sewn onto Hester Prynne's clothing in the novel actually was colored scarlet, albeit it was sewn to her clothing with gold thread. In the words of Hawthorne, "...[W]ith all the townspeople assembled and levelling their stern regards at Hester Prynne, - yes, at herself, - who stood on the scaffold of the pillory, an infant on her arm, and the letter A, in scarlet, fantastically embroidered with gold thread, upon her bosom!" (Chapter Two). See more »

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Version of The Scarlet Letter (1920) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Nathaniel Hawthorne's classic novel of sin and redemption...
26 August 2005 | by (Georgia, USA) – See all my reviews

The story recounts the downfall of Hester Prynne...her sin of passion, the tangible result of her sinning, her daughter Pearl, as well as the misery and torment of the father of the child. Enter Roger Chillingworth, a man determined to bring chaos to the lives of all. How Hester overcomes obstacles is a tribute to a strong and courageous woman.

I found it to be a compelling adaptation of the novel. The actors were well suited to their parts. The story line closely followed the book. I was given to understand that the minister is Puritan, as opposed to Catholic. Maybe some were misled because he was referred to as a "priest." The scenery was beautiful, the clothes and sets authentic. The music was haunting, and helped to set the tone. I thoroughly enjoyed the children who played Pearl at various ages, and found their acting quite good. In fact, the entire supporting cast did a good job.


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