The daughter of a country doctor copes with an unwanted stepmother, an impetuous stepsister, burdensome secrets, the town gossips, and the tug on her own heartstrings for a man who thinks of her only as a friend.
Roger returns from Africa after Osbourne's death to find his sister-in-law and his nephew living at their home as well. Cynthia has accepted the marriage offer of Mr. Henderson, a lawyer from London,...
It is revealed that Cynthia is also secretly engaged to Mr. Preston ever since she was 15 years old. When she tries to break off that engagement, Preston is reluctant to let her go or give her back ...
In the 1840s, Cranford is ruled by the ladies. They adore good gossip; and romance and change is in the air, as the unwelcome grasp of the Industrial Revolution rapidly approaches their beloved rural market-town.
This mini-series tells the story of Amy Dorrit (Claire Foy), who spends her days earning money for the family and looking after her proud father (Sir Tom Courtenay), who is a long term ... 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.
Royal Navy captain Wentworth was haughtily turned down eight years ago as suitor of pompous baronet Sir Walter Elliot's daughter Anne, despite true love. Now he visits their former seaside ... See full summary »
Widow Dashwood and her three unmarried daughters, Elinor, Marianne and Margaret, inherit only a tiny allowance. So they move out of their grand Sussex home to a more modest cottage in ... See full summary »
Emma Woodhouse seems to be perfectly content, to have a loving father whom she cares for, friends and a home. But Emma has a terrible habit - matchmaking. She cannot resist finding suitors ... See full summary »
Jonny Lee Miller
At 10, Fanny Price, a poor relation, goes to live at Mansfield Park, the estate of her aunt's husband, Sir Thomas. Clever, studious, and a writer with an ironic imagination and fine moral ... See full summary »
Jonny Lee Miller,
At age 10, Fanny Price is sent by her destitute mother to live with her aunt and uncle, Sir Thomas and Lady Bertram. As a child she was often made to feel that she was the poor relation but... See full summary »
For many years, young Molly Gibson had lived a blissful sheltered life with her widower father. However, her world is shaken with the introduction of new acquaintances and situations. Molly becomes friends with a landed gentry family, which includes two brothers with very different temperaments. Meanwhile, her father marries a widow with a daughter close in age to Molly. Eventually, Molly becomes a trusted confidante for her new friends and family; but the secrets become burdensome, as the gossip begins to circulate about Molly herself.Written by
The plum-colored caped coat and matching hat Barbara Leigh-Hunt (Lady Cumnor) wears to visit the Gibsons is the same costume Claire Skinner (Fanny Dashwood) wears to travel to Norland in Sense & Sensibility (2008). The hat is also worn in Byron (2003) by an extra at the London party where Byron meets Annabella Milbanke. See more »
I'm sorry I said anything about it now. I'll try to find a more agreeable piece of news.
Old Marjorie at the lodge is dead.
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The BBC version of Elizabeth Gaskell's "Cranford" a few years back was mostly about Dame Judi and her spinster cronies and their unbecoming bonnets, but this wonderful series, based on Mrs. G's last novel, focuses on the younger generation: Roger Hamley, the old squire's younger son, seems like a perfect match for Molly Gibson, the doctor's daughter; he's a budding naturalist, she reads Lamarck and other serious works; they both enjoy looking at pondwater through the microscope.
The problem is that Molly's father has just remarried, which brings Cynthia, a vivacious, not-so-serious stepsister, into the picture; before he sets out on a lengthy expedition, Roger proposes to Cynthia. This leaves Molly with plenty of time to help the other characters sort things out—Cynthia's unfortunate entanglement with a caddish young striver (Iain Glen, currently seen on "Game of Thrones"), Roger's older brother's estrangement from their temperamental father (a perfect part for Michael Gambon; twenty years after Waterloo, the old squire's still hatin' on the French).
Master adapter Andrew Davies, assisted by a near-perfect cast, really gets us involved in such no-longer-burning questions as whether a young lady who's "lost her character" by talking with a young man in a secluded spot could get it back by swanning around town for an afternoon with a peer's daughter; Rosamund Pike is charming, and gets to wear the best costumes, as the latter (I wanted to call her the duchess ex machina, but I think she's just the daughter of an earl).
Francesca Annis is clearly enjoying herself in the role of Molly's stepmother, Hyacinth, a scheming, moralizing ex-governess; Dad seems to find her adorable, because she's not the boss of him and, despite the unflattering Mid-Victorian coiffure, she's still Francesca Annis. Though Mrs. Gaskell was a reformer and a progressive on the issues of her day—she clearly approves of Molly and Cynthia's ladylike revolt against the town's gossips and prigs—it's interesting that she weighs in on the current stay-at-home-mom debate by portraying Cynthia as a fractious adolescent who resents her mother for "abandoning" her to go to work as a governess.
Justine Waddell may be a bit too glamorous for the part of Molly, but that doesn't strike me as a dealbreaker; Keeley Hawes, who seems to have had a corner on out-of-control ingenue roles that year (see "The Last September"), is just right for Cynthia. Available on streaming Netflix and Amazon Prime.
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