Some very greedy and selfish relatives are all after the failing old Martin Chuzzlewit's (Paul Scofield's) money. He is surrounded by all these sycophantic relatives that he truly despises ...
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Some very greedy and selfish relatives are all after the failing old Martin Chuzzlewit's (Paul Scofield's) money. He is surrounded by all these sycophantic relatives that he truly despises while ill, each one only interested in getting their hands on his estate.
This is an excellent adaptation of a fine novel. It is always a pleasure to see Dickens´s novels successfully made into films or TV series, and this version of Martin Chuzzlewit is without question the best adaptation of a Dickens novel that I have seen. Like in most of Dickens´s works the main plot is sometimes a bit difficult to keep track of because of the many secondary plots which attract our attention, but as far as I am concerned this is not a very serious disadvantage, since the far most important element in any Dickens novel is the wide range of interesting and peculiar characters that fill the pages, and since the cast of this TV production of Martin Chuzzlewit manages to make a number of the characters even more fascinating than they are in the book. All the actors and actresses in this TV-series are good; many of them are brilliant. Most remarkable are Tom Wilkinson, Keith Allen, Pete Postlethwaite, Emma Chambers, Philip Franks, Maggie Steed, and Julia Sawalha. Better acting than theirs in this production is not often seen. The entire cast seem in fact to have inspired and brought out the best in each other. An example of a character which has actually become more interesting as a result of the adaptation from novel to TV-series is the character of Jonas Chuzzlewit: Keith Allen´s interpretation lends him an even more profound air of gloomy desperation and twistedness than is expressed by the Jonas we meet in the novel. Pete Postlethwaite´s interpretation of Mr. Montague Tigg is likewise of such high class that it is almost an improvement on the book without being in the least degree unfaithful to it. I really cannot recommend this TV-series enough. People with a taste for Dickens can see it many times and still feel rewarded.
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