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Peverell Press, respected London publishing house with two hundred years of tradition, is taken over by new management. Gerard Etienne, new yuppie CEO, wants to implement radical changes. Soon he is found dead under bizzare circumstances. Commander Adam Dalgliesh, policeman in charge of the investigation, is convinced that the reasons for the death lie in the sinister past. Written by
Dragan Antulov <email@example.com>
[Gerard Etienne's body has been discovered]
Mr Etienne took over the firm fairly recently. Would you say that he was well liked?
[Mrs Demery looks quizzically at him]
Well, he wouldn't have been carried out of here in a body bag if he'd been a little ray of sunshine, now would he, Commander?
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'Original Sin' is a complicated story of murders at a prominent publishing house in London.
The novel 'Original Sin' is perhaps P. D. James' longest and richest book. Its many characters are fully and interestingly developed. Even the murderer is a fairly sympathetic figure. The book has multiple interesting narrative strands. It cannot be praised too highly.
The film, by contrast, is AWFUL. It should have been at least 4 hours long in order to do the complicated narrative justice. The casting is poor, and the acting for the most part is wooden. In the book, Frances Peverell and James de Witt are attractive young people. In the film, they are middle aged and are considerably less attractive than in the book. Roy Marsden's acting is uninspired, as is that of the actress who plays Kate Miskin. The murderer is a more stalwart figure in the film than in the book, which makes him less sympathetic in the film.
The themes of war and racism that one reviewer dislikes are central to the book. Without giving too much away, I will merely remark that the roots of the murders go back to World War II and that the alleged racism is connected to the horrors of the Holocaust. The young Jewish man on Dalgliesh's team understands the motives for the murders and as a result understands what the murderer was trying to do.
Finally, the excellent ending of the novel is cheapened by the different, sensationalized conclusion in the film. All in all, I'd say read the book, and don't bother with the DVD.
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