10 user 3 critic

Portrait of a Marriage 

1:13 | Trailer
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 ... See full summary »


Patricia Hodge




4 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »



Learn more

More Like This 

Fingersmith (2005)
Crime | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

In Victorian England, Sue, a young thief, participates in a scam to defraud a rich heiress by becoming her maid. Things take an unexpected turn and Sue's plan goes horribly wrong.

Stars: Elaine Cassidy, Sally Hawkins, Imelda Staunton
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

In 1950s small town Britain, a doctor develops a relationship with her young patient's mother.

Director: Annabel Jankel
Stars: Billy Boyd, Gregor Selkirk, Anna Paquin
Daphne (TV Movie 2007)
Biography | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

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 »

Director: Clare Beavan
Stars: Geraldine Somerville, Elizabeth McGovern, Janet McTeer
A Masculine Ending (TV Movie 1992)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

While English professor Loretta Lawson is attending a conference in Paris, she stays the night in the flat of a friend's acquaintance. She discovers a sleeping man in one of the bedrooms, ... See full summary »

Director: Antonia Bird
Stars: Janet McTeer, Imelda Staunton, Paul Brooke
Biography | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

The story of psychologist William Moulton Marston, and his polyamorous relationship with his wife and their mistress who would inspire his creation of the superheroine, Wonder Woman.

Director: Angela Robinson
Stars: Luke Evans, Rebecca Hall, Bella Heathcote
Mrs Dalloway (1997)
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

In 1923 London, socialite Clarissa Dalloway's (Vanessa Redgrave's) well-planned party is overshadowed by the return of an old suitor she had known thirty-three years earlier.

Director: Marleen Gorris
Stars: Vanessa Redgrave, Natascha McElhone, Michael Kitchen
Biography | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.5/10 X  

It's the fascinating true story about the love affair between socialite and popular author Vita Sackville-West and literary icon Virginia Woolf.

Director: Chanya Button
Stars: Gemma Arterton, Elizabeth Debicki, Isabella Rossellini
Drama | History | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Nothing - not her father, not the church - can stop unruly Angela from being with her childhood best friend turned great love, Sara. Based on a true story, Viola di mare, presents a ... See full summary »

Director: Donatella Maiorca
Stars: Valeria Solarino, Isabella Ragonese, Ennio Fantastichini
Hawks (1988)
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

Two terminally ill patients in a hospital yearn for relief from their predicament. With little or no friends, they form an uneasy alliance and plot an escape for one last wild time.

Director: Robert Ellis Miller
Stars: Timothy Dalton, Anthony Edwards, Janet McTeer
Affinity I (2008)
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

A grieving upper class woman becomes a "Lady Visitor" at Millbank prison, hoping to escape her troubles and be a guiding figure in the lives of the female prisoners. Of all her friendships ... See full summary »

Director: Tim Fywell
Stars: Zoë Tapper, Anna Madeley, Domini Blythe
Starting From... Now (2014–2016)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

Steph has just landed what appears to be the perfect job. She arrives in Sydney full of hope and expectation, determined that a fresh start is just what she needs. But when Steph falls for ... See full summary »

Stars: Sarah de Possesse, Rosie Lourde, Lauren Orrell
Les Girls (1988)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

Comedy set in a modelling agency, Maggie's Models.

Stars: Debby Bishop, Rachel Fielding, Janet McTeer


Series cast summary:
Janet McTeer ...  Vita Sackville-West 4 episodes, 1990
David Haig ...  Harold Nicolson 4 episodes, 1990
Cathryn Harrison ...  Violet Keppel Trefusis 4 episodes, 1990
Diana Fairfax ...  Lady Sackville 4 episodes, 1990
Peter Birch ...  Denys Trefusis 4 episodes, 1990
Alexander Pearce Alexander Pearce ...  Nigel Nicolson 4 episodes, 1990
Yves Aubert Yves Aubert ...  Concierge 4 episodes, 1990
David Griffith David Griffith ...  Purser 4 episodes, 1990
Chris Walker Chris Walker ...  Ben Nicolson 3 episodes, 1990
Kathleen Byron ...  Lady Carnock 2 episodes, 1990
Madelaine Newton Madelaine Newton ...  Mrs. Milligan 2 episodes, 1990
Judy Elrington Judy Elrington ...  Nanny 2 episodes, 1990
Madeline Blakeney Madeline Blakeney ...  Mrs. Staples 2 episodes, 1990


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 Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »



UK | New Zealand



Release Date:

19 July 1992 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Portrait einer Ehe See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


| (4 episodes)

Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?

Alternate Versions

For the U.S. PBS network premiere, 34 minutes of footage was cut from the original print, most of them being the soft-core lesbian love scenes. See more »


Featured in A Bit of Scarlet (1997) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

An Otherwise Perfect Union
21 July 2006 | by SylviastelSee all my reviews

Vita Sackville-West and Sir Harold Nicholson were married for more than 50 years and the parents of Benedict and Nigel Nicholson MBE, OBE, who wrote about his parents' unusual marriage in a very loving way. Both Vita and Harold had homosexual relationships on the side but it was Vita's relationship with childhood friend, Violet Keppel Trefuses who by the way is related to Camilla Parker-Bowles distantly that nearly threatened Vita and Harold's marriage. Marriage is an institution which produced two fine sons. The actress, Janet McTeer, who plays Vita does a superb job and memorable. Violet is played by Cathryn Harrison who I believe is Sir Rex Harrison's daughter or relative. Anyway the acting is sensational and it was quite revolutionary for it's time on television during Masterpiece Theater. Harold and Vita's marriage may have been quite unconventional by it's unusual circumstances but they stayed together. They built Sissinghurst Castle in Kent, England. Vita wrote a beautiful poem about her love for Harold. Now regardless that their union had outside lovers like Violet and Virginia Woolfe. They always returned to each other for comfort, companionship, and conversation. No, this marriage probably wouldn't survive today because there is just too much focus on sex completing a marriage. For those of us who know better, sex does not complete the marriage but enhance it. THe sexual desires of Vita and Harold may have been toward their own sex but they returned to each other every time. A successful marriage is based on being able to turn to the one you love, trust, and need in your most desperate time. Nigel wrote a loving book about his parents' unconventional marriage but he wrote that they still loved each other and returned to each other from their infidelities every time even with Violet Keppel.

7 of 12 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 10 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Free Movies and TV Shows You Can Watch Now

On IMDb TV, you can catch Hollywood hits and popular TV series at no cost. Select any poster below to play the movie, totally free!

Browse free movies and TV series

Stream Trending TV Series With Prime Video

Explore popular and recently added TV series available to stream now with Prime Video.

Start your free trial

Recently Viewed