A twelve-part BBC adaptation of Charles Dickens first novel. The story follows Samuel Pickwick and three other members of The Pickwick Club as they travel throughout the English countryside... See full summary »
Not perfect by all means, the story can jump around a bit and the early episodes at times lack excitement. However it is nicely done, as an adaptation it does respect Dickens' book though with omissions as well as inclusions that don't add very much. On its own it's fine, there is some crudeness in the production values but it is well shot and the costumes and sets have authenticity and opulence. The dialogue is tense and intelligently adapted, and while it takes some time to find its feet after around the halfway mark and we understand the characters and know who they are there is some very tense plotting which suited it fine, A Tale of Two Cities needs that. The best asset about this series is the acting, Judy Parfitt is absolutely chilling as Madame Du Farge and Ralph Michael and Nigel Stock stand out as well. Paul Shelley is more than credible in both the roles of Sydney and Charles, he is a little better as Sydney, mainly because Sydney is a more interesting character. Sally Osborne is just lovely and should have made it bigger. In conclusion, very good on the whole though the later episodes are stronger in quality than the early ones. 8/10 Bethany Cox
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