|Index||7 reviews in total|
I have loved the series of books that this miniseries is based on for
years, and when I saw the shows were available on VHS, I purchased them
right away. I thought the miniseries was just excellent. The characters
were portrayed just as I pictured them when reading the books. The
countryside is simply beautiful, and the Cazalets' estate is
perfect-looking. The shows stay quite true to the books' storyline, and
only complaint is that the issue of Rupert being missing in the war is
resolved by the end of the film. All the actors gave terrific
particularly young Florence Hoath as Clary Cazalet. She gives a powerful
performance and is a very talented young actress.
I highly recommend this miniseries, especially if you have read and enjoyed the books by Elizabeth Jane Howard.
I feel that sometimes it is easy to lose yourself in searching for mistakes within a costume piece rather then simply watching it for the story. The story of the cazalets was brilliant, I was hooked from start to finish. The casting was perfect and i felt that we were able to become familiar with the characters to the point where we began to really care for them
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Once again, Masterpiece Theatre presents a winner. We really enjoyed the various characters portrayed so well by an outstanding cast. Once again we find, "Nobody does it like the Brits." What a welcome respite from the bland American TV fare. The family is as diverse as most families with brothers different like upstanding Hugh and despicable Edward. The women are a rainbow of differing emotions, all interesting and well portrayed. We always enjoy seeing familiar faces in new roles demonstrating their versatility. Former Upstairs/Downstairs maid Daisy is now the cook much like Mrs. Bridges. Anna Chancellor, formerly an unpleasant sister in Pride and Prejudice now shines as Edward's mistress. Emma Malin, Fleur in the latest Forsyte Saga, excels as young Louise, an aspiring actress. Lesley Manville, recently in Cranford, shows he handles modern drama as well as period pieces as Villy, Edward's long suffering wife. Just a few of an excellent cast of which Florence Hoath as young Clary was the most impressive. Others have pointed out minor flaws which do not distract in our enjoyment of this series. We found it strange that Edward spoke of serving in the trenches in WWI and now in WWII he is an RAF Squadron Commander, who never flies, sails a boat to Dunkirk to evacuate troops and seems to spend most of his time seducing young WRENS? The non-conformist artist Rupert, similar to young Jolian in the Forsyte Saga, joins the navy and we seem him departing on the train in the uniform of a Lt. Commander? When he returns on leave, he is now a believable Ensign? The final episode did leave quite a few loose ends- will Rupert ever return to Zoe? Will Villy finally recognize Edward's many shortcomings? Will Louise ever forgive her father? Will pacifist Christopher ever be accepted by all Cazalets? In summary, I must recommend this series as an example of professional, polished and superb Briish drama. Finally, the cherry on the cake is the nostalgic musical score throughout. The wonderful songs of that era which endure to this day and provide a pleasant contrast to what passes for music today. Enjoy the Cazalets.
Cazalets is a sensitive portrait of complicated people. The fact that all the main characters belong to the same wealthy family makes their portrayed individuality even more unique. Historically there are some minor blurbs. But love, jealousy, sex, suffering, sorrow, death are unique to all times. Money and name cannot insulate us from the human condition, as the movie thoughtfully expounds. Five Stars !!!!! in my estimation.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
I love the books and this adaptation is fairly accurate although it
ends way too soon. Some of the characters are just as I pictured them.
A few annoyed me, especially the characters of Sybil and Rachel, both
such martyrs. Also, the role of Diana, as in the book she seemed much
softer and kind of helpless, not the way she was presented here. But
that is mostly a quibble against the book. Mostly it is an engaging
story of an upper class family before and during WWII. (Rupert is a bit
I wish they had not ended it the way they did, as the final book tied up many loose ends.
...I'm afraid I missed that altogether.
The series has just finished its run on ABC-TV in Australia. I just can't recall what the point or plot of the series was. It drifted through a series of charming 1940s vignettes (far removed from the realities of the war) but never developed any action, any interest, or anything much at all. It sort of fizzled out in about 1942 with a pointless wedding. That bridal dress must have used a ton of coupons.
As pointed out in another review there were some glaring errors. (i) despite having their timber business bombed out by the Germans the Casulets managed to keep on with their luxurious middle class life with nary a blip. Even kept the servants on. Hardly did a lick of work at business, before or after the bombing - obviously one of those wonderful self-managing operations. (ii) Never was the tranquility of their splendiferous rural retreat disturbed by the passage of hundreds of low-flying aircraft overhead. Couldn't have been anywhere in the south. (iii) Always bright sunshine, even in the depths of winter. (iv) The airfield, with a single fighter that taxied back and forth, was a manicured bowling green. A rutted quagmire would have been realistic. The windows were always spotlessly clean and never fogged up.
On the other hand, perhaps this is what WWII was like for those with pots of money -- a bit of a doddle.
Summary: 4 out of 10. A tremendous disappointment. "Dad's Army" is more plausible than "The Cazalets".
The new PBS series "The Cazalets" is billed as a latter day "Upstairs
Downstairs." It isn't. The characters are far less finely formed and the
first episode was a back to back (well, front to front) series of graphic
sexual couplings. Set in England on the eve of WW2, it appears that nobody
in the British Isles did anything in 37 and 38 other than bonk each other.
Marital sex. Extra marital sex. Violent sex. Lesbian sex. Even incest. And
this was only episode one! What can we expect in coming weeks? Kinky sex? SM
sex? Bestiality? Really! This is not the mandate of either PBS or BBC. There
are x-rated channels for such voyeurism.
The first episode also has some glaring errors. The word "flak" is used twice. A German acronym for "fliegerabwehrkanonen" or "anti aircraft guns", it entered the language only in the early years of the war and would have been in no-one's vocabulary in 37 and 38.
The first episode also shows the servants gathered around a small radio listening to Neville Chamberlain's address. Small radios were rare in 1938 and they certainly were not in plastic cases. There also appear to be no antenna or ground wires, essential elements of the receivers of the period. I spotted these two errors because they fall within my knowledge. How many others might there also have been?
It's an interesting snapshot of an interesting period of history. But like most snapshots, it was done without much thought or artistry.
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