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The Cherry Orchard (1981 and 1962 Versions)


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The Cherry Orchard (1981 and 1962 Versions) + Hedda Gabler (1962)
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Product Details

  • Actors: Judi Dench
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Closed-captioned, Color, Full Screen, Black & White, NTSC
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 1.0)
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 2
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: BBC Home Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: March 27, 2007
  • Run Time: 260 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000LV6OKI
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #73,011 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "The Cherry Orchard (1981 and 1962 Versions)" on IMDb

Special Features

  • Includes 1962 and 1981 versions
  • Judi Dench talks to Richard Eyre

Editorial Reviews

Product Description

This two-disc set presents both BBC's 1962 and 1981 productions of The Cherry Orchard Set in fin-de-siecle Russia, these adaptations of Anton Chekhov's famous play chronicles a noblewoman's return to her family estate after a five-year absence. She finds that the family fortune has dwindled to practically nothing, and that she and her brother are faced with the difficult choice of selling the family's treasured cherry orchard or losing everything.

Amazon.com

Judi Dench is one of those actors who rarely seem to make a false move, handling wrenching drama, madcap farce, and witty comedy with equal aplomb. Among the BBC productions of classic and original plays available in the The Judi Dench Collection, she stars as Anya in Anton Chekhov's The Cherry Orchard, a 1962 production translated by, and starring, John Gielgud and, as Madame Ranesvky, Peggy Ashcroft. Ashcroft is a hard act to follow, but Dench pulls it off in a 1981 production in which she assumes the role of the irresponsible aristocrat, also included here. --Donald Liebenson

Customer Reviews

3.8 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

26 of 26 people found the following review helpful By nyc_tm on July 9, 2007
The cast in both versions handle Chekhov's material with the utmost care. The direction in the 1962 M. St.Denis version is rather beautiful. One can't really go wrong with a cast like Gielgud, Ashcroft, Dench, Tutin, etc. They all just give the most stunning performances of this material. Chekhov is actually incredibly timeless, and the cast is absolutely thrilling to watch. Richard Eyre's 1981 version is a bit more stoic, but his choice to bring Judi Dench on as Mdme. Ranevsky was like finishing a luxurious necklace with the Hope Diamond. Judi Dench has the unbelievable ability to let a story and character filter through herself like an incredibly adept translator. Both of these versions are magical. The more theatrical version of 1962, and the "made for film" version of 1981. Both should not be missed, if even only for the experience of the remarkable performances, but certainly for the well handled telling of the genius Chekhov.
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15 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Deborah Peifer on May 12, 2007
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Watching Judi Dench play Anna in the earlier production and then Madame Ranevsky twenty years later offers an opportunity to see a good actor become great. Her mature skills are extraordinary, but her ability twenty years earlier to play with such art is truly amazing. Also, each production of The Cherry Orchard is great, entirely worthy of Chekhov's greatest play.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By camatchett on November 25, 2012
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I purchased this DVD set to use in my sophomore English class where we studied this classic. Such a great idea: the 1962 version with Judy Dench as young Anya...plus the 1981 version with Dame Dench playing Mama. Wonderful addition to my curriculum.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Marisa F. Gouvea on April 21, 2010
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The two productions of The Cherry Orchard, last play written by Chekhov, presented in this DVD: the first one, by The Royal Shakespeare Company (1962) and the second, by BBC (1981)are a blessing to those who love theater. It's interesting to compare the way the productions dealt with the text and the great number of characters on stage,(Once upon a time, it was possible to do so) in a gap of almost twenty years of technology. We are talking about a play performed to a TV audience, anyway. It's also an opportunity to observe the peculiarities of the performances of each actor/actress. The way each one creates his/her own character. The black and white version - that could bore us - on the contrary exactly for being less distracting, highlights the performances.
It's a pleasure to see Dame Judi Dench as a beautiful young lady in her twenties giving her first steps in what would be a great career, showing from the beginning the same dramatic vigour that characterizes her. Late, already a more mature actress, she comes out with this rhythm of her, a balance between inner and outer strengh of saying things, a gift of telling much with less or no effort. Beautiful indeed! As a bonus, a very good interview she gave to Richard Eyre, the 1981's version's director. I wonder if someday we could have a series like this here in Brazil.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By C. J. Pisapia on May 14, 2009
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This video is a joy if you love British theatre, which I do. It is also wonderful to see how incredible an actress Judi Dench was in 1961, and her further development in 1982. She has always been and continues to be brilliant. It is also interesting to see how changes were made to update the vocabularies used in the two performances, and the differences in interpretations of roles in the play by the various actors.
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By Thomas M. Lane on March 1, 2012
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Can't imagine any admirer of great, great acting or of Chekhov could get through life without this double header. Put watching it on your list of things to do every year.
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