Tipping the Velvet (2002)

TV Mini-Series  -   -  Drama | Romance
8.0
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Ratings: 8.0/10 from 5,118 users  
Reviews: 42 user | 3 critic

Set in the 1890's, tells the lesbian love affair between male impersonator music hall star Kitty Butler and Nan Astley.

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Cast

Series cast summary:
...
 Nan Astley (3 episodes, 2002)
...
 Kitty Butler (3 episodes, 2002)
...
 Diana Lethaby (2 episodes, 2002)
...
 Florence Banner (2 episodes, 2002)
Alexei Sayle ...
 Charles Frobisher (2 episodes, 2002)
John Bowe ...
 Walter Bliss (2 episodes, 2002)
...
 Zena Blake (2 episodes, 2002)
...
 Woman with Cigar (2 episodes, 2002)
Carl Chase ...
 Corder (2 episodes, 2002)
Janet Henfrey ...
 Mrs. Jex (2 episodes, 2002)
...
 Jimmy Burns (2 episodes, 2002)
...
 Mrs. Denby (2 episodes, 2002)
Sara Stockbridge ...
 Dickie (2 episodes, 2002)
...
 Singer (2 episodes, 2002)
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Storyline

Dramatised from Sarah Waters' acclaimed debut novel, "Tipping the Velvet" tells the story of Nancy Astley (Rachael Stirling), a young girl who works as cook and waitress in her Father's seaside restaurant - that is until she witnesses the extraordinary performance of a new-to-town male impersonator - Kitty Butler (Keeley Hawes) - and begins to undergo a complete life transformation. Suddenly whipped up - and quickly flung down - by her love affair with Kitty, she experiences both euphoria and deep disillusion as she embarks on a seven-year journey of self-discovery - finally realizing that a life of sensation just isn't enough. Written by Kanji

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | Romance

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Details

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Release Date:

9 October 2002 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

Besant el vellut  »

Filming Locations:

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

(3 parts)

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Did You Know?

Trivia

One of the songs in the film, "Following in Father's Footsteps", was originally performed by famous male impersonator Vesta Tilley in the London halls of Victorian England, during the late 1800s, when "Tipping the Velvet" is set. See more »

Goofs

The roses Kitty gives out in her act are obviously artificial. But later when Nan shows Kitty she kept the rose she received from her, the rose is wilted. See more »

Quotes

Florence Banner: [after overhearing a prostitute in the women's bar talk about an easy and enjoyable job, Florence looks truly puzzled] Tipping the velvet? Why what ever can THAT be?
Nancy Nan Astley: [rather surprised at the question] You don't know?
Florence Banner: [Smiling] Well it sounds like something to do with dress making or millinary, but it can't be. No one would pay to watch that.
Nancy Nan Astley: [Laughing] No. It isn't.
Florence Banner: Well what then?
Florence Banner: [Nan has showed Florence the tip of her tongue, then pointedly nodded and looked at Florence's lap] Oh!
[...]
See more »

Connections

Featured in Screenwipe: Episode #2.3 (2006) See more »

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User Reviews

 
More Than Gay
24 January 2005 | by (St. Louis, Missouri) – See all my reviews

Labeling this film a "lesbian love story" is about as accurate as calling Pride & Prejudice a "straight love story." There's just so much more to it than that.

Yes, the main character is a lesbian, but her story is classic bildungsroman, a journey from childhood to adulthood, from sexual innocence into maturity, from personal blindness to self- discovery. There is a stylistic element of camp to the film's direction, but it is not a hindrance; rather it serves to underscore the staged and dramatic parts of the main character's life.

Those who know Anna Chancellor from the BBC version of Pride and Prejudice will certainly be amazed with her here. Rachael Stirling is stellar as the main character Nan, and Keeley Hawes is all wide-eyed goodness as her lover Kitty Butler. Chancellor might have the stand out role, that is aside from Sally Hawkins who plays Zena Butler. This film is not for the faint of heart, but it's not a piece of pro-gay advertising either. It's a real story, with real comedy and drama, an engaging story with compelling characters, and well worth watching.


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