In the 1920s, decades after the troubled and unhappy marriage between Soames Forsyte and the beautiful pianist Irene Heron came to an end, Soames and Irene have both remarried and moved on.... See full summary »
At the center of the story is Augustus Melmotte, a European-born city financier, whose origins are as mysterious as his business dealings. Trollope describes him as 'something in the city',... See full summary »
Emma Woodhouse seems to be perfectly content, a loving father whom she cares for, friends, and a home. But Emma has a terrible habit - matchmaking. She cannot resist finding suitors for her... See full summary »
Jonny Lee Miller
Set in 1870s England, the story tells of Annabella Lagrange and the terrible secret her wealthy parents have kept from her. When she finally learns the truth, she runs away and eventually ... See full summary »
Set in Victorian London, Gwendolen Harleth is drawn to Daniel Deronda, a selfless and intelligent gentleman of unknown parentage, but her own desperate need for financial security may destroy her chance at happiness.
When asked about his nudity in the miniseries at the Starz/Encore portion of the Television Critics Association summer tour in Beverly Hills (via satellite from London), Chris O'Down said he thought it was important to the character: "Guess it was just necessary. It would feel very, very silly to be skittish about such things [because] Romola [Garai] is going so far with those things [in her performance]". Also, commenting on his costar Romola Garai and their characters, he said "Romola's such a professional and such a wonderful actor and we kind of made it work... These characters are so selfish and actors aren't the most selfless persons in the world, so combine those two things and it had its ups and downs." See more »
As an avid watcher of period drama and also as a film student, I found this drama particularly engrossing. It was extremely well written and executed. The costumes and sets were authentic-looking and very detailed, which made it that much easier to watch. The opening sequence of the first episode really sets the tone and clues you in to the overall darkness of the series, which the viewer is sometimes coaxed into forgetting. The music, the dim lighting, the angled shots of eerie faces and unsettling scenes in dark rooms and alleyways. I would almost think this was based on a Dickens novel if weren't for the next few scenes.
As for the characters and the acting, pretty damn awesome. The whole cast was amazing and very believable, this made me love Romola Garai even more, but I have to say that the standout for me was Amanda Hale as the enslaved and sickly wife and tragic heroine Agnes Rackham. The plot moves along at a good pace, stopping along for some elaborate scenes that depict the characters in their respective prisons, whether it be a big lonely house or a dirty brothel- and you should be warned now: they really don't leave much out; it romanticizes nothing. I sympathized with nearly every character, some more than others, as each is scheming or dreaming a way to a freedom. Some scenes were hard to watch and pretty disturbing, especially once I became so connected to the characters, but I felt that most of them were necessary to the plot.
This is the point where I could go on and on about the lighting and the music and the costumes/sets and the photography, all of which were amazing (yay for Marc Munden, you have new fan). But I will refrain from my geek-out and just say that it really was good for all those reasons. "The Crimson Petal..." paints a very gritty and slightly morbid portrait of what life was like for women of different class in Victorian England and it makes me thankful to be a young woman in the 21st century. Sugar as the embodiment and narrator, I felt, was quite human and easy to understand, and was such a fascinating character throughout, sometimes hard and devious, and always wickedly smart and wise beyond her years, and sometimes righteous and compassionate. The only reason this is a 8/10 is that there were just a few weird jumps in the editing from time to time and also my own squeamishness, but it hardly detracts from the overall brilliance of this series.
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