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Berkeley Square (1998)

Clare Wilkie , Victoria Smurfit , Lesley Manning , Richard Signy  |  NR |  DVD
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (270 customer reviews)


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Product Details

  • Actors: Clare Wilkie, Victoria Smurfit, Tabitha Wady, Kate Williams, Jason O'Mara
  • Directors: Lesley Manning, Richard Signy
  • Writers: Deborah Cook, Lilie Ferrari, Suzanne van de Velde
  • Producers: Alison Davis, Christopher Moss
  • Format: Box set, Color, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 3
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: Bfs Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: December 12, 2000
  • Run Time: 510 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (270 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00004W5P5
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #126,106 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Berkeley Square" on IMDb

Special Features

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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com

A classic coming-of-age tale on par with Anne of Avonlea and Little Women, Berkeley Square is worth watching over and over again. This 10-episode British miniseries will awe you with its erudite script, wonderfully believable characters, high-caliber production values, meticulous Edwardian details, and topnotch acting. In fact, you will join the growing multitudes who puzzle over why the BBC decided to stop after only 10 episodes.

In 1902 three young nannies find jobs in well-to-do London households and get to know each other. Naive farm girl Lydia finds an unfamiliar world both in city life and with the progressive-thinking family who employs her. Earnest, rule-abiding Matty is a hard-working East End girl who slowly learns to loosen up. And, after a tragic affair with the eldest son of a grand Yorkshire family, Hannah's life in London is full of chilling secrets and grave life-and-death decisions. --Tara Chace


Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
470 of 478 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars ATTENTION, BBC...PLEASE CONTINUE THIS SERIES! January 21, 2002
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
What a great series! I had never before seen it on television and, loving period pieces as I do, decided to make the purchase. It was worth every penny! My sister, who also loves period pieces, came over. Together, we hunkered down and proceeded to watch the entire series in one sitting, all eight and a half hours of it. We were positively riveted to the screen, so engrossing and well acted is the series.
The series centers around three young women, Mattie, Lydia, and Hannah, brought by fate to posh Berkley Square in turn of the twentieth century London. All three work in households where they are employed as nannies. All three meet and become fast friends.
Mattie is a an experienced nanny, who was brought up in the tough East End of London and, consequently, is firmly capable of holding her own. She works for a family that is on the unpleasant side with two children, a boy and a girl. The boy is a positive little beast, and the household is run by a crafty and cunning housekeeper. Mattie's benign and pleasant, baby faced countenance, however, belies a will of iron. She most certainly can take care of herself and hold her own with this motley crew.
Lydia, the fresh faced and naive country girl, works for a wonderful family, as assistant to a nanny who is like an old family retainer. She watches over the baby, the first child of her employer's second wife, who is an American with modern, egalitarian views. The only blight on her existence, is the grown, handsome son from her employer's first marriage.
Hannah has a more unusual history, as she is an unwed mother. She worked as a lady's maid for one of Yorkshire's first families. A love affair with her employer's handsome, only son leads to the birth of their illegitimate son.
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245 of 259 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Addicitive Television Viewing! February 25, 2002
By A Customer
Format:DVD
Following in the tradition of such fantastic BBC mini-series brought to the U.S. via "Masterpiece Theatre" as "The Grand," "The Pallisers" and "Upstairs, Downstairs," "Berkeley Square" holds up well for lovers of Victorian/Edwardian-era costume dramas cum lavish soap operas.
"Berkeley Square" focuses on the very end of the Victorian era, and the begining of the Edwardian phase, taking place in 1902, when all of Britain was celebrating the coronation of a new king. Like "The Grand" (my personal favorite) or "Upstairs, Downstairs," "Berkeley Square" focuses on the difference in the classes, highlighting the lives of three nannies: Mattie, Hannah and Lydia, all of whom work in the stately homes on Berkeley (pronounced "Barkley" by the Brits) Square. It's also a fairly accurate depiction of a subject little discussed in most series--the fate of children in Victorian England. Watch "Berkeley Square" with a modern sensibility and you'll be shocked how the "privileged" class looks upon their children. (Something like children speaking when presented at an adult social event is enough to cause "extreme embarrassment" for their parents and the possible dismissal of a nanny and, like real upper class Victorians, these parents rarely see their offspring, generally leaving 100% of the child-rearing to servants.)
You first meet Mattie, the goodie-two-shoes of the group, as she starts her new job as nanny to the Sinjin family. Mrs. Sinjin is less than happy in her marriage and is carrying on a flirtation--that could so easily lead to more--with the dashing, and quite possibly diabolical, Captain Henry Morgan.
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126 of 131 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars ANOTHER KEEPER FOR VICTRIAN DRAMA FANS VIA THE UK April 12, 2011
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
A wonderful 1902 period London Victorian drama. Activity surrounding three nannies in different posh families makes for dialogue and interaction between the classes. It's a shade like "Upstairs Downstairs" yet something unique too. Each of the 3 girls: Matty (Claire Wilkie-`Eastenders'),uneducated Lydia (Tabathia Wady-`Doctors' `Sense & Sensibility'), & Hannah (Victoria Smurfit-`Trial and Retribution' `Ballykissangel') have different backgrounds with Hannah perhaps being the most `colorful' having born a child through a relationship with a former Yorkshire upper. The girls become friends as well as soldiers tending the care of those rich youngsters. Of course the activity and lively constitution that the upper class families provide adds to the storyline, making its mark on the nannies hopes and dreams.

Britain seems to have a hold on top quality Victorian series. The fact it is a period story makes the series very re-watchable. The settings, costumes, and props are first rate, a standard for British made turn-of the century Victorian tales. This is simply one of those many produced that have and will continue to be sold and watched, like classic Victorian novels.

Also to be watched is part-nasty Nanny Collins (Rosemary Leach-many roles, I like "Titmus Regained' `A Room with a View')and full-nasty Nanny Simmons (Ruth Sheen-'Lorna Doone' 'Vanity Fair') who is the head nanny to the Hutchinson kids where Irish Hannah assists. Ned Jones (Jason O'Mara-`Life on Mars' "Monarch of the Glen' 2 great series) who is besotted by Matty (aka Sarge) and he sparkles back adding some interesting romance to their lives--and with footman Jones' violent past, tsk, tsk. Expect some intrigue and scandal along with the treks to the park and smiles. This is no "Mary Poppins" revival.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent series
Another complete series that I absolutely enjoyed watching.
Published 5 days ago by furryfriends3
3.0 out of 5 stars Three Stars
Quite a different type of drama. Some parts are hard to believe. But its OK
Published 6 days ago by bradley
4.0 out of 5 stars She thinks it is well done and has enjoyed it.
Daugher likes the movie very well. Will look it at a later time. She thinks it is well done and has enjoyed it.
Published 7 days ago by NanAnn
3.0 out of 5 stars Not so great!
Nothing to compare to the other PBS dramas.
Published 7 days ago by Cappuchino
5.0 out of 5 stars Missing Ending
Series leaves you hanging! It stops leaving more than a couple cliffhangers. I was SO disappointed! Read more
Published 18 days ago by Joan Taylor
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
I am totally hooked on this series.
Published 18 days ago by JP
3.0 out of 5 stars Awful DVD quality
I haven't watched much of it so I can't comment on the story line - though at this point it isn't compelling - but the quality of the DVD is appalling... Read more
Published 1 month ago by Lee Winston Wright
2.0 out of 5 stars had potential but...
This mini series had potential, but it was ruined by the shockingly abrupt ending. It was a slap in the face to the viewer to end a series with a "tune in next week"... Read more
Published 1 month ago by KayeN
5.0 out of 5 stars Love love love
This period of movies are my favorite and this was no exception. I wish they would have made more of this series.
Published 1 month ago by Marion Bradt
3.0 out of 5 stars Half Wonderful
As a lover of British Edwardian drama's, I was very excited to see this. I enjoyed the first 3 DVD's very much. Read more
Published 1 month ago by S. Mullins
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BBC should be inventive and find a way to continue Berkley Square
I completely agree, I was hugely disappointed by the ending of this wonderful series, I wish there was a way to find out what happened to the characters after disc 3, if not from a book, then perhaps from writers of the show. When buying a series like this, they should have a warning in the... Read More
Apr 9, 2010 by Sarah Klotz |  See all 6 posts
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