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Harmon is planning to claim his dust fortune from the Boffins, who have been playing villains to test Bella's true character. Meanwhile, Eugene has a brush with death via Headstone and decides to do ...
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This Masterpiece Theatre production, set at the cusp of the Industrial Revolution, chronicles the life, loves, foibles and politics of the fictional English town of Middlemarch. Adapted ... See full summary »
At the center of the story is Augustus Melmotte, a European-born city financier, whose origins are as mysterious as his business dealings. Trollope describes him as 'something in the city',... See full summary »
Set in Victorian London, Gwendolen Harleth is drawn to Daniel Deronda, a selfless and intelligent gentleman of unknown parentage, but her own desperate need for financial security may destroy her chance at happiness.
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The tongues of London high society gossips begin to wag when John Harmon --a young man whose inheritance depended on his marrying a woman he had never met-- is found dead in the River Thames. The fortune passes into the hands of the working-class Boffins, who take into their new home both Bella Wilfer (Harmon's would-be bride), and a mysterious secretary known as Rokesmith. Meanwhile, Lizzie Hexam, the daughter of the boatman suspected of Harmon's murder, is pursued by two suitors: obsessive and self-righteous Bradley Headstone and roguish and lethargic Eugene Wrayburn. An expansive and varied cast of characters create an epic intertwining tale.Written by
Our Mutual Friend is my favourite on-screen adaptation to date, and there are obviously some weighty contenders.
I appreciate that some people think there are too many characters, but most Dickens books are full of many and varied, wonderful characters and I think that Sandy Welch mastered the quantity in adaptation, without cutting out important characters and then sewing the plot closed around them (I still mourn the loss of Orlick from Lean's 'Great Expectations').
The casting and acting in Our Mutual Friend is superb and I feel slightly guilty to pick out certain actors above the rest so I will choose only one to shower with praise, David Morrissey, who performed with such convincing emotional rawness that I hoped for some kind of redemption for Bradley Headstone.
The opening scene gave me goosebumps when it first came on the BBC in 1998 and it sometimes has had that effect since, despite repeat viewings. The atmosphere captures the murk and mystery of the Thames and illustrates the ghoulish occupation of the boatmen.
This murk is matched with some scenes of great beauty, lavish outdoor scenes which celebrate the English countryside, great houses, colourful costumes and the chocolate box cottage. This serves to contrast against the stench of the dust heaps and the grime of Mr Venus's home.
Dear BBC, can you have Sandy or Andrew adapt Dombey and Son sometime soon?!
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