Around the World in 80 Days (TV Mini-Series 1989) Poster

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Excellent Intro for students
homerj07-125 February 2009
I have always tried to figure out why people pan a film simply because it was "not like the book".

I agree this mini-series is not as true to Verne's vision as other movies BUT it is an excellent introduction to Vernes & the late 19th century for students.

I have used this movie in my 9th grade World History classes & my students absolutely LOVE it. Over 3 weeks we watch the film track their progress on a map & keep track of the various modes of transportation that the main characters use.

We also discuss the role of Britian as an imperialist power & the growing importance of the US in the world.

I suggest this film for teachers & for families with middle school aged children. A great film!!
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A thoroughly enjoyable mini-series.
jordans5124 August 2003
In my opinion this mini-series is far superior to the much praised 1956 movie starring David Niven. Pierce Brosnan is excellent as the unflappable Phileas Fogg, and Eric Idle is superb as Passepartout. The action moves from one cliff-hanger to the next, much in the fashion of a old-time Saturday matinee serial, and the story is always entertaining. The developing love interest between Fogg and the princess (Julia Nickson) is also handled well.
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Television tackling Verne
theowinthrop24 January 2007
Warning: Spoilers
This is the 1989 miniseries with Pierce Brosnan and Eric Idle that retold the story of the 1872 Jules Verne novel that was the subject of the 1956 Mike Todd film that won the Oscar for Best Picture that year. The 1956 film is a little better than this because of Todd's showmanship and the work of Cantaflas and Robert Newton (and David Niven and Shirley Maclaine). But the 1956 film is not as great as it seemed in 1956 - the cameo performances which helped bring many people to see that film now seem a curiosity to modern film audiences who may not know who A.E. Matthews or Col. Tim McCoy were.

This version has it's weaknesses too. Although Brosnan and Idle are quite good, the best is Ustinov as a fat-headed Detective Fix (even in his final moments in the film his last revelation of "genius" is like an annoying gift of a migraine headache). But the mini - series tried to up-date (or back-date) the film a little with dollops of reality. So Louis Pasteur, Sarah Bernhardt, Cornelius Vanderbilt, and Jessie and Frank James pop up in the film. Verne would not have liked that - he prided himself on his ability to invent characters (as all novelists do). None of the changes were necessary.

Still it has some rewarding aspects. Robert Morley (who was in the 1956 film as an official of the Bank of England, and a member of the Reform Club) reappears here as a more eccentric looking head of the Bank of England (abetted by Roddy MacDowell as his assistant). In the novel's plot, Fogg is suspected of being a man who robbed the Bank of England. In the end Morley and MacDowell meet this gentleman (he does not appear in the 1956 film) and finds he is a very weird thief indeed. Also, there is a choice moment when (while traveling across the U.S. by train) Fogg/Brosnan starts giving his low opinion of America's treatment of it's Native American tribes as organized theft, degradation, and destruction. Unfortunately, in talking about the American Indians, he raises the interest of Princess Aouda, a genuine Indian from India. And she starts bringing up some pointed comments about another Anglo-Saxon country's treatment of Indians. This was not in the novel or in the 1956 film, but it was nice to see that Aouda for a change had a mind of her own - and could be critical and even a little icy toward Phileas (Brosnan's embarrassment and apologizing is priceless).

For all it's defects, the television version was well worth watching too.
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A fun and satisfyingly enjoyable adaptation
gwdaley-124 April 2005
Having read the book several times and being a real fan of this and other Verne novels, not to mention, travel in general I can wholeheartedly recommend this movie. If you have read the book and enjoy watching movies then hire, borrow or buy this film if you would like to see a fairly faithfully adapted version of the book starring an agreeable cast and featuring a varied number of far flung and pretty faithful looking locations. Brosnan may be a little younger than the Fogg I'd seen in my minds eye when reading but he performs very well and is suitably dashing and stiff upper lipped where he should be whilst also exhibiting a believably self-conscious even shy air around the very beautiful Julia Nickson. She plays her part very well also and the only negative comment I can make is that she isn't very Indian looking. But that isn't a problem, she looks wonderful anyway. Eric Idle and Peter Ustinov provide the comedy, the former giving rise to a number of laugh out loud moments for those of us with a sense of humour and being on the whole, very enjoyable to watch. Ustinov provides a few light hearted moments also, but I will admit he is a little to hammy for my liking, mumbling and shrieking a little too much. The cameos are right out of a who's who of 80's TV and it was fun to see some old TV favourites, such as Quincy's Jack Klugman, popping up in unexpected places. As previously mentioned the locations impress. And I wasn't disappointed, for example having been to Hong Kong myself on several occasions the sampans and the junks were set in a location that looked to me just as I'd imagined the now heavily built up modern city to have looked in the 1800s. The extras too look suitably indigenous to the parts of the world our heroes are passing through.

So on the whole if you are looking for a movie that relays a sense of travel, a sense of adventure, a strong element of romance and above all a real honest sense of fun - just as the book did - then seek out this movie. It may have taken a few liberties here and there and it does take a few scenes from the Niven version that didn't appear at all in the book, but it still relates the story as told by Verne and in my opinion it does it very well indeed. Some would have you believe that it doesn't bare much resemblance to the book and is poorly acted but this is patently untrue. Its a great version and well worth the five odd hours of my time.
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The best version
TheLittleSongbird21 June 2011
The book by Jules Verne is a masterpiece, and of all the three versions of it I've seen(this, 1956 and 2004) in my opinion this mini-series is the best version. There are some scenes that are not in the book, but they didn't bother me, they were just as entertaining as the ones that were. I had no problem with the length either, to give the book justice I personally think it works better as a mini-series. On its own terms, the mini-series is very entertaining too. The costumes, photography, geographical locations and sets are wonderful, the various scenes and going-ons are consistently entertaining and interesting completely with some fun references to various historical figures and the writing is excellent and has the feel of Verne's style too. The acting is right on the money, Pierce Brosnan and Eric Idle are both superb, and spotting familiar faces such as Robert Morley, Roddy McDowell and Peter Ustinov is a sheer delight in itself. All in all, excellent mini-series and for me the best version, if more deserving of a better DVD. 9/10 Bethany Cox
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One my favorite classics with Pierce Brosnan
sam20007 April 2000
A very enjoying and interesting series to tell Jules Vernes great novel. Pierce Borsnan makes a brilliant Fogg, and the rest of cast is equally good.

The Brosnan just gives a new dimension to the character described by Jules Verne, and with his similar physical features to the character of the novel.

Just as Brosnan has the remarkable resemblance of James Bond as describe in Ian Flemmings novels.

Nice for the whole family to watch.
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Quite entertaining, isn't it.
FlorianSchirner25 February 2007
Warning: Spoilers
First to say, I like it, but.... ...there are some details I can't quite forgive. Though there are many liberties taken with the original book (the whole Siam and China Episodes,the Vanderbilt yacht etc.), I'm mostly concerned with the figures of Passepartout and Fix. The first seems to me to be too much comic relief and less substance. The Passepartout in Verne's book isn't as fixated on women as Idle's character. Additionally, Idle's acrobatics don't look like the moves of a circus artist, which Passepartout is. The second character striking me as odd is Ustinov as Fix. From Verne's book you get the image of a dedicated, well-trained and resourceful detective who is only hindered by the necessity of an arrest warrant.He certainly isn't the whining, moping, overweight fellow as he appears in the movie. Don't get me wrong. I like both actors' work, especially Ustinov's, but I think of it as inappropriate and not in conformity with the book. Aside from this, you can do nothing wrong in watching this movie, especially with children.
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Excellent miniseries
ShelbyTMItchell31 October 2004
This is a great miniseries for the whole entire family. Pierce Brosnan doing a Bond/Remington Steele as Fogg from a kind of cold-hearted but then caring Englishman making the legendary journey. Rambo and Babylon Five's Julia Nickson beautiful as the princess. The great and late Peter Ustinov in one of his fine performances. But the person to steal the show is Eric Idle of Monty Python as the caring and resourceful as well as comic relief Jean Passepartout. He played Passepartout as a frenchman and also was really the star but gave way to Pierce/Fogg. Idle is the real, real star. And the mini series is like the book. Unlike the Jackie Chan movie and David Niven. More like follows and stick closely to the Jules Verne novel!
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Not as bad as portrayed
rinzai5 June 2005
While it's not high cinema, it's watchable, and certainly passes the time on a rainy afternoon. It could be said that Phileas' constant do-si-do with the Princess (as Passepartout puts it, "l'affaire du coeur") does drag a bit, but I can't find any reasons to be truly unhappy with it. It's more authentic than the Jackie Chan version (which I don't hate, either).

I don't see this portrayal of Fixx as a bumbler, either...efficient Fixx may be, but he was never a Nobel prize nominee, and Ustinov does well enough with what's provided. The Princess may have some anachronistic attitudes, but no historical movie has ever failed to cast the characters in at least a semi-modern mindset--it makes the characters more accessible to modern viewers. Of Eric Idle I'll say no more--I enjoy his work, and I don't care if the accent is ludicrous or not.

It's entirely possible that the novel simply can't be filmed. It wouldn't be the first one to have that happen. ("Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy" comes to mind, for example.)
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A Surprisingly Literate and Intelligent Version of Fogg's Adventure
museumofdave17 April 2013
There are three major versions of the Verne book available on DVD; this version took me by surprise, not only because it is literate and more faithful to the original than the other two versions, but because Pierce Brosnan makes of Phileas Fogg a complex, believable Victorian man who learns that perhaps Empire and all it represents is not everything. David Niven was a brilliant caricature of Fogg, all style and quips, and whoever plays him in the Jackie Chan version is completely and innocuously forgettable--Brosnan plays Fogg for reality, and in doing so, invests the entire epic voyage with an exciting reality the other two versions do not have.

This version, originally shown on television is long, and unfortunately, the two discs are filled with blackouts where commercials were once inserted, and with extra title sequences--no matter; while this is not filled with flash and amazingly comprehensive cameos as is the first version, it is also not stupidly infantile and filled with potty humor ( as is the most recent Coogan-Chan version). For a television version, this is quite compelling, full of good scenery, several beguiling and beautiful female leads, and a good amount of suspenseful narrative--it's old fashioned, but rewardingly so.
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Marvelous experience
Borko Baric28 May 2004
I guess this is the ultimate Jules Verne adaptation. This mini-series is in every way far superior to the 1956 movie, and almost certainly will be to the upcoming one. I have to admit I haven't read the book, but somehow I believe the series to be pretty true to the story. Humor and thrills are making the fabric of an exciting adventure story throughout the world. Look for some interesting references to historical figures, like Sarah Bernhardt or Jesse James, and also for some beautiful geographical locations. A brilliant cast, headlined by pre-007 Pierce Brosnan, excellent Eric Idle and a perfect Peter Ustinov makes this one of the most enjoyable TV experiences ever.
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Gentleman Phineas Fogg wagers he can circumnavigate the earth and he sets off on spectacular journey
ma-cortes5 January 2012
TV miniseries rendition with all-star cat , it finds Victorian gentleman wagering that he can circle the globe in 80 days . New adaptation classic Jules Verne with a marvelous duo , Pierce Brosnan and his faithful butler well played by Eric Idle who confront much excitement and many trials along the way . The film provides ample amusement and entertainment , it concerns about a Victorian English gentleman named Phileas Fogg (Pierce Brosnan) and his manservant named Passapart (Eric Idle) . He takes a wager with three gentlemen (Simon Ward , Patrick MacNee , Christopher Lee) from 'The Reform Club' that he can circle the globe around the world in 80 days . At the beginning they are accompanied by an enticing , likable French woman (Arielle Dombasle) and later on a gorgeous Indian girl (Julia Nickson ) . Just before the time they leave , a valuable lot of money is robbed and the authorities and president of Bank of England believe that unflappable Fogg is the guilty and they set out after him . Using various means of transport as balloons, trains , steamer , flying machine and following a way , Fogg along with Passepartout go to Dover , Paris (during the revolutionary commune), Brindisi , Florence , Rome , Suez ,Calcuta , Burma jungle , Yokohama , Forbidden city of Pekin , San Francisco , Omaha and New York , as they are trying back to London . Meanwhile , they are chased by an Inspector named Fix (Ustinov) who suspects him of a daring bank theft . In the traveling they meet historical personages as Sara Bernhardt (Lee Remick) , Louis Pasteur (Vernier) ,Jesse James (Stephen Nichols) and even the Queen Victoria (Anna Massey).

This funny picture is plenty of adventures , humor, action , rip-roaring and spectacular outdoors . From the start to the final the entertainment and amusement is continued . Appears a variety of cameos , the star-gazers will particularly enjoy several known actors by many Hollywood's biggest names and TV stars as John Mills , Roddy McDowall, Jack Klugman, Robert Wagner , Jill St.John , Darren McGavin , John Hillerman , Pernell Roberts , among others . The colorfully cinematography is well showed on sensational landscapes and lively music by Billy Goldberg .

The film is compellingly by Buzz Kulik but in television style . Buzz is an usual TV filmmaker (Woman of valor , The Lindbergh kidnapping case , From here to eternity , Riot , Code name : dancer, Sergeant Ryker , Pioneer woman, Rage of angels) and occasionally for cinema ( Villa rides , Shamus , The hunter) . The motion picture will appeal to Pierce Brosnan fans and adventure enthusiasts . Other version about the Jules Verne novel are : the classic ¨Mike Todd's Around the world in 80 days¨ that hasn't lost its charm over the years , directed by Michael Anderson with David Niven , Cantinflas , Shirley McLaine and more than thirty cameo appearances for buffs as Marlene Dietrich , Trevor Howard , Robert Newton , John Carradine , Noel Coward and Robert Morley who repeats in this 1989 TV version . Furthermore , Australian retelling titled ¨Around the world in 89 days (1986)¨ by Stephen MacLean and recent adaptation (2004) offering full of entertainment directed by Frank Coraci with Jackie Chan ,Steve Coogan,Cecile De France , Mark Addy , Owen Wilson , Luke Wilson and many others .
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Finest representation ever and school example of director's direction over actors that need tight control to perform their best.
Volken8 September 2007
After all this years - since the very first time I've watched this version in 1989. - yesterday the test of time confirmed and secured my original impression : This is by far the best version ever !

There is always the problem when you hire a good looking actor with tension of maintaining the ego-trip of his own, besides the character he portrays. Pierce Brosnan is one of those actors. In hands of poor director, Brosnan will always extend this virtue without exception. Well, not this time, this is Pierce's best role ever. This is the school example when in good and precise hands under control of fine director - one man's faults are completely used to his advantage. Fulfilling his complete talent.

Pierce is completely available, accessible and truly enjoyable.

Not only does he makes splendid Phileas Fogg but essentially greatly communicates to the splendor of entire ensemble and therefore none but the excellent realization itself.

Quality of production is first rate, casting even more superb. There is one, almost traditional problem with traveling productions like these : You can always observe "production stitches" among countries and collaboration among locations and collaborators. Not in this version you don't !

From beginning to the end, production follows from location to location with flawless synergy, only complimenting the ones before. Truly a wonderful , relaxing experience, indisputably with superb execution. I thought in 1989. It would be a bold statement to compare this with original. Now I know it is nothing of the sort. This version is indisputably, the finest visual representation of this book. Not completely on the track with all characters from the book - for they received somewhat different treatment. But I forgive this looking at the complete results.

Looking somewhat with envy to the magic of 80's, one can be certain that such a classy ensemble and relaxed pace is almost impossible to create these days. Golden days to be sure.
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OK film lacks the vitality and imagination of the original
SimonJack20 November 2015
This 1989 TV miniseries has some amusing moments and is mildly entertaining. For anyone who has not yet seen the original movie by the same name, this TV film also may be interesting in its portrayal of scenes at different locations around the globe. It's interesting that it doesn't list a filming location in the United States or Canada. So, the Western outdoor scenes must have been shot in Yugoslavia. That's the only place of those listed that might have landscape that resembles some of the western U.S.

This version of "Around the World in 80 Days" has a huge cast with many cameo and bit appearances. It's production quality isn't up to the standard of 1956 classic production of the Jules Verne classic. The actors mostly are OK, but no one stands out. Likewise for the technical aspects of the film. I enjoy Pierce Brosnan in most films, but he doesn't seem to get into the character of Phileas Fogg. If anything, he overacts and doesn't seem to be natural in doing so. Eric Idle is just fair as Passepartout. Peter Ustinov is a bit old at 68 to be playing Inspector Fix, and he shows it.

Overall, this film doesn't seem to have the imagination or vitality of the original. Younger moviegoers who have seen and enjoy this version would be sure to enjoy the 1956 film. That would give them a chance to compare the production aspects and performances.
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Very good adaptation, too bad the DVD is not worth it
miguelangel-2315 December 2005
Very enjoyable adaptation of the Jules Verne Novel.

Around the world in 80 days. Pierce Brosnan is fantastic in his role of the inventor and scientist Phileas Fogg. The cast is superb and the photography fantastic. Far better production that the new adaptation with Jacky Chan on it. Unfortunaly when finally after a very long wait the DVD came up, what a disappointment, the DVD simply sucks, no production notes, or special features or anything at all, besides, the quality of the image is at the very least 1/10. The poorest I've ever seen in a long time. I mean if you are going to produce something, put a little heart on it. I hope we can very soon enjoy this mini series in its complete extend, with a special edition DVD.
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Great adaption, great actors
dkiltz16 October 2004
Warning: Spoilers
*Potential spoilers*

I guess I'm echoing what others have written. This is truly a 'classic' adaption of the book. The characters are, of course, a little over-painted, but that's supposed to be so. It doesn't rely on slap-stick gags or the like but is extremely funny nevertheless. The key story, namely that of Mr. Fogg finally getting out of his corset of punctuality and distance, facilitated by the unconditional devotion of Passepartout and love of the Princess is being put to the audience in a remarkably unpretentious and delicate way. Excellent!
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Pierce Brosnan´s best performance
Duke_Roger25 January 2004
The general opinion if you read a book which later become´s a movie, or vice versa, is that the one you experienced first is the best or true story of what "actually" happend, this one is the exeption that confirms the rule, becuse this is in my opinion a perfect translation from book to movie, it thousn´t differ to much on the original manuscript by Jules Verne, and besides Pierce Character as a arrogant, timesaving snob fits him whery well.
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Phileas Fogg's excellent journey around the world
Petri Pelkonen13 October 2011
Phileas Fogg, a rich gentleman and a bachelor, accepts a wager at the Reform Club that he can travel around the world in 80 days.He leaves on the journey with his new valet, Frenchman Jean Passepartout.There's also a certain detective Fix of the Scotland Yard following them, for Mr. Fogg is also suspected of robbing the bank.During their trip they also get company from Indian Princess Aouda, whom they safe from certain death.Fogg may have to leave his bachelor life behind him soon.Around the World in 80 Days (1989) is a three-part miniseries directed by Buzz Kulik and written by John Gay.It's based on the famous novel by Jules Verne, published in 1873.I first came familiar with this story through an animated series.Then in the mid 90's I read Verne's novel.Recently I borrowed this miniseries on a DVD from the library.And I think it's splendid.This is exactly what a miniseries of Jules Verne's classic book should like.And what a list of actors it has! Pierce Brosnan is just the right man to play Phileas Fogg.And Eric Idle is just fantastic with his accent playing Passepartout.Julia Nickson is wonderful as Princess Aouda.Peter Ustinov makes his detective Wilbur Fix character somewhat pitiful.Then there are some familiar names in the list.Jack Klugman plays Capt. Bunsby.Roddy McDowall plays McBaines.Lee Remick plays Sarah Bernhardt.Jill St. John is Woman mistaken for Princess Aouda.Robert Wagner, who became Jill's husband the next year, is Alfred Bennett.Henry Gibson plays Train Conductor.Christopher Lee portrays Stuart.Patrick Macnee plays the part of Ralph Gautier.John Mills portrays Faversham.Pernell Roberts is Captain Speedy.Anna Massey plays Queen Victoria.Ian McNeice is Batcular.There are some differences between the show and the book, like characters that weren't mentioned in the book.Characters like Sarah Bernhardt, Louis Pasteur and Jesse James.This miniseries offers some great adventure.Like when they fly in the air with the Purple Cloud.And a horrible storm strikes when they're at sea.In the wild west they're faced by an Indian attack.There's also a great deal of humor in the story.Not to forget romance.Around the World in 80 Days has everything for everybody.
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Far superior to the 1956 motion.
sandy-j9 August 2000
This TV mini-series is far superior to the 1956 motion which had David Niven in the lead role. Brosnan is perfect as Phineas. It is great family entertainment and manages to keep you in suspense even though you know the outcome.
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Absolutely marvellous!
patherwill27 July 2014
I happened across a DVD of this film by chance because it was one a friend passed to me and which was a 'freebie' apparently given away in a national newspaper. Prior to watching this, I was really only interested in the Crime and Western genres. Once I saw this film which is truly delightful in every way I have treasured the DVD and this film is in my Top 10. Why? The casting is perfect. The acting is superb and there are so MANY wonderful performances that it would be very difficult to list them all.Pierce Brosnan is brilliant as Phileas Fogg, Julia Nickson captivating as the Princess and Eric Idle is both funny and serious in his role as Foggs' man-servant. The filming is stunning and the screenplay is again perfect. There is little more I CAN or indeed NEED to say. It is a film to settle-down with on a Winters evening and enjoy.
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A pleasure to watch.
cmyklefty17 January 2002
Pierce Brosnan plays Phileas Fogg and Eric Idle plays his traveling companion Passepartout. Phileas Fogg's gentlemen club put a bet for on him to go around the world in eighty days. He travel with his companion on the journey of a lifetime. They go through a series misadventures and lucky chances on their trip. Robert Morley is the only actor to act in both the 1956 and 1989 version of this classic story. The 1989 version in longer and better than in 1956. It is almost like reading the book, but watching it on TV.
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the film did not follow the original novel and made some stupid error
cxc62030 May 2005
There is no scenario about the forbidden city in Jules Verne's original novel. John Gay added this to this film and made an absurd mistake: move the forbidden city from Peking to Shanghai(From North China to South China). This indicates that John Gay has a poor geographical knowledge and does not qualify to write this travel film. It is pity for this film.

THe original novel is very good. Any modification of this original novel should be more carefully. John Gay's modification did not only make an absurd geographical mistake, but also make a logical error. The captured time of Mr Fogg by Chinese Emperor will use up Mr Fogg's time several days and make him failure for this wager definitely.It is pity for this film although the performance of the actor and actress are much good.
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