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Brother Cadfael - The Virgin in the Ice (1995)

Derek Jacobi , Michael Culver , Sebastian Graham Jones  |  NR |  DVD
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Derek Jacobi, Michael Culver, Julian Firth, Terrence Hardiman, Mark Charnock
  • Directors: Sebastian Graham Jones
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Closed-captioned, Color, Full Screen, NTSC
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo)
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: Acorn Media
  • DVD Release Date: June 27, 2000
  • Run Time: 75 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00004TJRW
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #271,873 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Brother Cadfael - The Virgin in the Ice" on IMDb

Special Features

  • Production Info
  • Ellis Peters Biography
  • Book list

Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Derek Jacobi. Brother Cadfael makes some disturbing discoveries while trying to solve the apparent murder of a young woman. Color/75 min/NR.

The first Brother Cadfael mystery to be released on DVD, The Virgin in the Ice captures all of the elements that make these adaptations of Ellis Peters's novels a perennial PBS favorite. The performances and sets bring 12th-century England to vivid life (although the series was actually filmed in Hungary). Derek Jacobi portrays Cadfael with a quiet authority and just the right edge of world-weariness one would expect from a Crusader turned monk. His search for two missing children and for the band of outlaws who brutally beat one of his fellow monks turns up intrigues and surprise twists that make this episode a captivating human drama as well as an expertly crafted mystery. From frictions within Shrewsbury Abbey to the ongoing war between Queen Maud and King Stephen, The Virgin in the Ice plunges viewers fully into Cadfael's world and all of its unexpected joys and perils.

The DVD includes several minutes of audio comments by Derek Jacobi about taking on the role and the appeal of Cadfael. Other special features include biographical information about Ellis Peters (a pseudonym for Edith Pargeter), a production scrapbook of behind-the-scenes photos, and English captions for the hearing-impaired. --Larisa Lomacky Moore

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
32 of 35 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of Cadfael's best cases... June 10, 2000
Do you like BBC dramatizations with fine actors such as Derek Jacobi (I, Claudius) and Alan Rickman (Sense and Sensibility)? Do you like first class mystery stories you can watch over and over because the plots are complicated and you miss some of the detail the first or second time you see the film? Do you like romance and action set in the Middle Ages? Are you fascinated with daily life in a monastery and the fine art of healing with herbs and remedies learned by an ex-Crusader now turned healing monk?
The time is the mid-1100s. Queen Maude and King Stephen, first cousins who each claim the throne of England, have divided the land in Civil War. "The Virgin in the Ice" is set in the town of Shrewsbury England, near the border with Wales. Brother Cadfael (Jacobi) is an ex-Crusader, who in his old age has become a member of the Abby of Saints Peter and Paul. When he was as a Crusader, Cadfael acquired the knowledge healing from Miriam, a woman he knew in the Holy Land (and the Biblical sense). He ministers to the monks at the abbey, the town folks, and any others who may need his services.
One bleak mid-winter night, Cadfael's young assistant is found half frozen on a road near the abbey. He has been badly beaten and is semicomotose from a skull fracture. Cadfael nurses him back from death's door. Meanwhile, Brother Jerome, the abbey "snitch" and troublemaker overhears Cadfael's assistant ranting about a woman. Brother Jerome jumps to the conclusion the young man has done something very bad. The young monk had been in the company of a young noble woman and her tutor a young nun when last seen. Now he has been found alone. What could possibly have happened?
Cadfael, being a careful and sensible monk does not jump to conclusions.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A CHILLING MYSTERY AND MURDER March 26, 1999
Format:VHS Tape
Christmas is coming, but the Abbey of St. Peter and Paul isn't merry at all. With King Stephen and Empress Maud warring over who is the rightful ruler of Englad, two orphans are sent to Shrewsbury by their guardian for safekeeping. When the youngsters and their chaperone Sister Hilaria turn up missing, Cadfael is enlisted by Hugh Beringar, Shropshire's undersheriff, to locate Ermina and Yves Hugonin and the nun. Beringar coldly refuses to let the nobleman's search party enter the shire. The children's uncle is a recently returned crusader but he sides with Maud and Beringar supports Stephen.
In the weaving of this tale, the threads become tangled when Brother Oswin, Cadfael's engaging but inept assistant, is brought to the Abbey unconscious, barely alive. While on a mission of mercy, Oswin met up with the siblings and Sister. Another fiber is woven into the fabric when Cadfael, out looking for the orphans, finds the nun frozen in a stream, murdered. The evidence points to the novice monk, with whom Sister Hilaria was last seen as they and others fled a raid upon Ermina's fiance's manor. After finding Yves, Cadfael ventures forth in search of Ermina and to prove, or disprove, Oswin's innocence, or guilt.
Shrewsbury's forest bristles with bandits, and there is a mysterious stranger from the Far East named Olivier de Bretagne. The exotic gentleman came to serve with Ermina and Yves' uncle in Jerusalem and followed him back to England, homeland of the father he never knew. The soldier secretly stays in Shrewsbury, despite the danger and peril, to complete his mission - tracking down and securing the two Hugonins' safety. When Cadfael and Olivier meet, the two bond immediately for some mysterious reason.
Ermina is finally found.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars One of the better entries January 19, 2001
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
Brother cadfael, 12th ecntury benedictine monk and herbalist of the abbey of St Peterand St Paul, of Shrewsbury has been transformed into life by Sir Derek jacobi,and in a way, has become his as much as his creators,Ellis Peters. In this entry,the civil war raging between King Stephen and Empress Maud[never far from any of the 20 stories]is raging on...It opens with Brother oswin,cadfaels clumsly,sweet novice wandering about in a snowstorm,then coming uopn a gropup of badints, and being beaten and stabbed and left for dead. A missing pair of teens,their teacher{a nun}, a lord,some wayward crusaders,another crusader and our intrepid slueth are intertwined very well. The scene of the frozen corpse being melted by candle while gregorian chant in sung is very well done,though much of the snowfall looks like soap flakes. The acting is first rate. Jacobi has done, to the same degree with a lesser literary figure, what the late Sir Alec Guiness did with John Le Carre's Geroge Smiley: made him so much his own it is difficult to distinguish between the two.There are a couple of surprises here, a twist at the end,and a satisfying conclusion to this chapter. The video is not vey well filmed at least my dvd was poorly shot. I do not think it was the transfer,I think it was the quality of the original recording. I have vhs copies of this series that are much better productions. Also, there are no special features worth talking about. So to sum up, nice storyline, superb acting from Jacobi,interesting moments,poor quality recording.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Complex plotting and hidden agendas
During this tale of lost teenagers, wicked violators, and errant crusaders, Cadfael has to untie a Gordian Knot of possibilities, and he does so with his usual aplomb. Read more
Published 20 months ago by Barbara Castleton
5.0 out of 5 stars Loved the Whole Series of Mysteries
The title is a little misleading, but I'll leave it to you to find out why.

Brother Oswin is brought in nearly dead, having been attacked while on a mission to bring a... Read more
Published on May 12, 2012 by Barbara Frederick
5.0 out of 5 stars The very best Cadfael episode
The incredibly artistic portrayal of this sad story is visually striking and quite memorable. But the added twist of Cadfael's discovery of who the young hero really is -... Read more
Published on September 21, 2011 by Linda
3.0 out of 5 stars History comes to life
This series of historical mysteries shows the social structure
of England and the problems. The rape murder of a young nun
is the basis for this movie, but Brother... Read more
Published on February 18, 2010 by Roger Bagula
4.0 out of 5 stars brother cadfael -the virgin in the ice
If you like a good mystery and are a student of history then buy and watch this series
Published on September 17, 2009 by Robert R. Decavalcante
4.0 out of 5 stars The Best of Jacobi's Cadfael
Of all of the Brother Cadfael books that were filmed with Derek Jacobi in the title role, this is my favorite! It introduces the sleuthing friar to the son he never knew he had. Read more
Published on October 7, 2008 by Katherine Hadden
5.0 out of 5 stars A very different Christmas
Although the video doen't precisely follow the book, the visual presentation is a stunning feast for the eyes! Read more
Published on January 5, 2003 by John
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent viewing for mystery fans
I love the Brother Cadfael mysteries - I watched them on TV quite a few times and when the DVDs became available I ordered them immediately. Read more
Published on November 20, 2000 by Lisa Shea
5.0 out of 5 stars A SON'S RETURN
Can you imagine Oswin caught up in the arms of a woman? Picture him kissing her softly then flying into a rage wherebye he rapes and kills her. Read more
Published on September 23, 2000 by Bonita L. Davis
4.0 out of 5 stars Was it change for the sake of change?
The Virgin in the Ice is one the the many Ellis Peters books that I have read and enjoyed over the last twelve+ years. Read more
Published on August 4, 2000 by Margaret Rundle
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