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Beau Brummell: This Charming Man (2006)

George 'Beau' Brummel, a penniless but witty London gentleman, maintains a refined lifestyle with his loyal servant, cook Robinson. Only the friendship of the unpopular Hanoverian heir and ... See full summary »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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...
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Master Servant Robinson
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Tailor
John Telfer ...
Fop
Tim Hudson ...
Fop
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Julia
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Richard Meyler
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Lord Charles Manners
Ian Kelly ...
Lord Robert Manners
...
Marquis of Worcester
Daniel Fine ...
Cloth Merchant
Nick Richards ...
Snuff Merchant
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Duke of York
...
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Storyline

George 'Beau' Brummel, a penniless but witty London gentleman, maintains a refined lifestyle with his loyal servant, cook Robinson. Only the friendship of the unpopular Hanoverian heir and Prince Regent, George, Prince of Wales, who acclaims Brummel's fashionable invention, dandy-ism, keeps the creditors from his back, even allows him unconditional credit. Alas a triangle with lady Julia and the equally dubious poet Lord Byron ends up costing him the prince's favor, so his debts come bite him with a vengeance. Written by KGF Vissers

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Drama | History

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Release Date:

19 June 2006 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

Beau Brummell  »

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Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The white gown with beaded trim on the sleeves and down the front worn by a guest at the party where Brummel meets Byron is the same costume worn by Morven Christie (Jane Bennet) for the wedding in Lost in Austen (2008). See more »

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User Reviews

 
A truly astonishing account of an amazing man
7 August 2006 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

Beau Brummel Beau Brummel was an 18th Century gambler, socialite and overall dazzling light of high-society who invented the look of the Dandy. This was a time in history where the French ruled the world in terms of style and fashion and it was normal for men to wear white wigs with white makeup, reddened lips and cheeks in a style known as the fop. Brummell deconstructed masculinity and is actually responsible for the introduction of the trouser as the preferred form of clothing for the gentleman – up to now it had been the pantaloons or breeches.

His style was astonishing; he developed the trend for men to look carelessly smart, clothes simple, yet elegant – black trousers, jacket, white shirt and intricate neckerchief – but of course this took hours of preparation. He totally redefined how men should behave – how they would stand, smell, look, interact. He was closely associated with Lord Byron and also with Prince George – son of George III. Hereby hangs a tale of wealth, beauty, excess, comedy and tragedy.

James Purefoy and the assembled cast provide something quite astonishing in this rendition of the most astonishing tale of a man who styled the future king of England, who managed to squander several fortunes in such amazing style and panache that he makes it look like the most fun a human could ever have. The relationships between Brumell and his manservant, Byron and his sister, the gentlemen of high-society are so exquisite in this superb BBC production that I found my self totally seduced.

If you only watch this production for one scene it must be where the Prince Regent demands Beau come to show him how to dress "come and watch me!" he exclaims in exasperation, and the Prince does, and we do too. Such an erotic and charged scene – Purefoy shaving and preening in the morning sunlight, watched by first the Prince and then an array of admirers; this character was so seductive people would come for miles to see how he managed to assemble his dress.

The production is small in scale; a few well-chosen external sets, some spectacular location work used very carefully. But it is the script and the performances, framed so sympathetically by the director with a very well-judged soundtrack, which makes this a gem of a work. Forget the nonsense by Jane Austen, this is where the BBC set the screen on fire and if you get the chance to see this, you must. It is a production that just works so well and somehow burnt itself into my mind to linger in my mind long after the credits had rolled.


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