Melodrama detailing the real-life love affair between feminist writer Vita Sackville-West and novelist Violet Keppel against the backdrop of post-World War I England and opposition by ...
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With the end of World War I in 1918, Vita returns to her family home to her husband and sons. However, she continues to write and correspond with Violet, who is still being courted by Trefusis who is...
After being denied a promotion at the university where she teaches, Doctor Lily Penleric, a brilliant musicologist, impulsively visits her sister, who runs a struggling rural school in ... See full summary »
Unable to forget her first love, Félicité, a simple and kind maid, devotes herself completely to her new master, Mathilde Aubain. As the passing of time doesn't heal her wounds, she gives ... See full summary »
Set during the years between the "Rebecca" trial and the writing of Du Maurier's short story "The Birds", including her relationship with her husband Frederick 'Boy' Browning, and her ... See full summary »
Melodrama detailing the real-life love affair between feminist writer Vita Sackville-West and novelist Violet Keppel against the backdrop of post-World War I England and opposition by Vita's politician husband Harold Nicolson. Vita and Violet's romantic relationship becomes increasingly obsessive which spawns destructive feelings of possessiveness and jealousy between them.Written by
The BBC miniseries issued on DVD have been sustaining me this winter. I found this one at my public library; it had been eluding me for many years. I am a fan of Janet McTeer and Cathryn Harrison, and found the account of the love affair between Vita Sackville-West and Violet Trefusis to be fairly engrossing, although overlong (at almost four hours). The problem is that these people are only moderately interesting--we remember Vita, if we remember her at all, as a character from Virginia Woolf's Orlando, while Harold is known as the author of diaries from the 1930's in which he recounts his experiences with Oswald Mosley and other famous people. Harold and Vita are bit-players on the stage of Europe between the wars, not principal players.
I was entertained by the two female leads, who were brought to life successfully by Penelope Mortimer's screenplay. Cathryn Harrison was especially vivid in her portrayal of the more emotional and headstrong Violet. David Haig was excellent as the repellent Harold, a man who has his cake and wants to eat it too (in other words, have Vita as his wife and enjoy men on the side). Peter Birch as Trefusis was no more interesting than an illustration on the cover of a biscuit tin.
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