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Bleak House (2005/BD) [Blu-ray] (2009)

Anna Maxwell Martin , Denis Lawson  |  NR |  Blu-ray
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (869 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Anna Maxwell Martin, Denis Lawson, Carey Mulligan, Finn Morrell, Gillian Anderson
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Blu-ray, Color, NTSC, Special Edition, Subtitled, Widescreen
  • Language: English (PCM Stereo)
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region A/1 (Read more about DVD/Blu-ray formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.78:1
  • Number of discs: 3
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: BBC Home Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: May 5, 2009
  • Run Time: 465 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (869 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B001P7YDA0
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #100,536 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Bleak House (2005/BD) [Blu-ray]" on IMDb

Special Features

  • Audio Commentary
  • Interviews
  • Photo gallery

  • Editorial Reviews

    DVD Features:
    Audio Commentary
    Interviews
    Photo gallery

    Customer Reviews

    Most Helpful Customer Reviews
    248 of 261 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars Actually better than the earlier version February 14, 2006
    Format:DVD
    For once, I am happy to find a remake of a fine old Masterpiece Theatre offering that is as good as the original. "Bleak House" is currently available on an DVD with Diana Rigg as the most familiar name; and except for some incomprehensible line readings by a young character named Joe, it is a very good account of the Dickens novel. Having already appeared on Public Television, the remake has Gillian Anderson (yes, the one from "X-Files") as Lady Dedlock, and a cast of 80 speaking roles, many of which are played by actors that will send you searching the cast listings that go by too quickly at the end of each episode.

    The eight parts will be shown so that the first and last will run two hours and the four in between an hour each. I found the complex plot actually easier to follow in this version than I did in the earlier one. And while I prefer Rigg to Anderson, I think I can easily recommend this new adaptation over the other.

    The story--lawyers will hate it--involves the infamous Court of Chancery in which disputes over estates can be buried for years until the lawyers' fees make further legalizing unnecessary. Against this background, the case of Jarndyce vs. Jarndyce being a major part of it, we have the story of John Jarndyce (Denis Lawson), his ward Ada (Carey Mulligan), her companion Esther (Anna Maxwell Martin), and Ada's beloved Richard (Patrick Kennedy).

    The latter becomes obsessed with the case, while Esther becomes involved in the mysterious past of Lady Dedlock, who happens to recognize the handwriting on some legal documents delivered by the utterly immoral family solicitor Tulkinghorn (Charles Dance). I will not reveal any more of the plot, lest it spoil your enjoyment.
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    166 of 185 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars Victorian Mystery January 23, 2006
    Format:DVD
    I caught the first two hours of this adaptation of Dickens Bleak House on Masterpiece Theatre on Sunday night and I was immediately hooked. If you love dark Victorian mysteries this is a must see. I remember hearing promos for the show stating its starring Gillian Anderson but I thought it was some English actress with the same name as Scully from the X-files. What a shock when I realized I watched Scully for I did not realize it at the time it was her. Ms. Anderson becomes Lady Dedlock replacing her FBI professional pant suits outfits for a Victorian frock. Although common elements to both characters are repressed emotions and icy personalities. I have not read the novel but the show is emphasizing the mystery aspects of the story with Lady Dedlock trying to hide a secret from her past, how everybody's fate is somehow bound into the Jarndyce case over disputed wills and what role if any Esther plays in all of this. Also, the series focuses a sharp eye on the byzantine legal world of Victorian England that makes the US legal system seem the epitome of efficiency. Charles Dance is great as the ruthless barrister Tulkinghorn who sets his sights on uncovering Lady Dedlock's secret. Anne Maxwell Martin is great as the innocent and virtuous Esther Summerson. Besides Ms. Anderson some might recognize Mr. Dance who has seen roles in various movies and TV series including the villain in the Eddie Murphy Buddhist action-adventure movie The Golden Child, and Denis Lawson, who plays the benevolent John Jarndyce, was Wedge Antilles in the original Star Wars movies. Like any Dickens novel this TV series is filled with interesting often eccentric secondary characters from the young law clerk Mr. Guppy to Miss Flite. Read more ›
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    91 of 100 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars Deadlock. Debtor's Prison. Dickens! February 20, 2006
    Format:DVD
    A simply magnificent production of Dickens. Read the Amazon editorial review above, I agree with all of it.

    Dickens can be difficult to translate to film. His cartoonish drawings of his characters, both literal and literary, are the stuff of political lampoon. And he IS interested in politics; the politics of class, culture, the legal system, and how his characters are trapped in them, by situation, and by their own human choices. His characters and story lines are so intricate that they must have been manna for the readers of his (no tv, no film) time period, but they can sometimes be dry and dull for a modern audience.

    Enter the skillfull writing of THE MASTER ADAPTOR Andrew Davies, and a production that careens and slams prison doors from one story to another, and we are briskly carried along... in this story of secrets, blackmail, and the endless wait for the legal system to do... something... anything.

    As with most BBC casting, it is excellent... every single character not only LOOKS as they should, but can really act. Nice to see Gillian Anderson break through and prove that yes, american actresses really CAN run with the best of them, if they get the chance to. Anna Maxwell Martin as our lead protagonist is simply wonderful. She has the kind of looks that we do not get to see in the hollywood casting system. Her character does not rely on her appearance, because she knows she can not, but she becomes so dear to us, we care deeply about her, and her complexity and calm in the midst of chaos reveal her true inner beauty. Through her we see the souls of others as they respond to her.
    Read more ›
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    Most Recent Customer Reviews
    4.0 out of 5 stars I enjoyed this series very much
    I enjoyed this series very much. It was well acted. I look forward to listening to the Audible audiobook of the same title. Dickens is always a delightful read.
    Published 1 day ago by M. G.
    5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
    Excellent
    Published 1 day ago by cpcjr
    5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
    This is the most well done version of Bleak House. The actors make you believe the characters.
    Published 2 days ago by Kathy Hess
    5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
    Great series.
    Published 2 days ago by Cyclist
    4.0 out of 5 stars BBC adapts Dickens for TV screen!
    BBC does it again. They did a wonderful job adapting Charles Dickens take "Bleak House" to the TV screen as an eight part series. Read more
    Published 3 days ago by Sabba Efie
    5.0 out of 5 stars A wonderful show!
    I had to convince my husband to watch this miniseries. However, by the end of the first episode we were both hooked and it only gets better with each episode. Read more
    Published 3 days ago by looney527
    3.0 out of 5 stars Dark and Strange...
    Very dark and strange at the beginning. Perhaps if I had read the story, I would be more into it. Still, I keep watching. Perhaps my rating will go up after a few more episodes.
    Published 3 days ago by L. VanCouvering
    4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
    Good acting. Good drama.
    Published 3 days ago by Angel
    4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
    The acting is wonderful.
    Published 3 days ago by muriel
    5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
    This is an excellent production of Dickens' classic book. The cast is amazing... every character.
    Published 3 days ago by Glenn A. Hall
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    Topic From this Discussion
    More than platonic? Probably not.
    I quite agree with you. It is obvious that Lady Dedlock, though having not verbalized it, is aching for the daughter she misses and manifests that longing by the way she interacts with Rosa.
    Mar 25, 2009 by Zarah Mayes-Horowitz |  See all 3 posts
    One of the 3 disks went wonky! Be the first to reply
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