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Forsyte Saga Collection (1985)

Damian Lewis , Gina McKee , Chrisopher Menaul , David Moore  |  NR |  DVD
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (56 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Damian Lewis, Gina McKee, Alistair Petrie, Amanda Root, Rupert Graves
  • Directors: Chrisopher Menaul, David Moore, Andy Wilson
  • Format: Closed-captioned, Color, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.66:1
  • Number of discs: 5
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: Acorn Media
  • DVD Release Date: August 14, 2012
  • Run Time: 702 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (56 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0083HXKMC
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #39,500 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Special Features

Making-of featurette (20 min.), photo galleries, John Galsworthy biography and booklist, and cast biographies and filmographies

Editorial Reviews

Damian Lewis, Gina McKee, Rupert Graves

"A ripping good story" —San Francisco Chronicle
"Marvelous" —The Sunday Times (U.K.)

"Great drama" —TV Guide

With sumptuous costumes, bold characterizations, and slow-burn action, these two complete series tell the story of a family bitterly divided by ambition, adultery, and revenge. Featuring "stunning performances" (The New York Times) from an all-star cast led by Damian Lewis (Homeland, Band of Brothers), these adaptations of John Galsworthy's celebrated novels impressed critics and fans alike when they aired on Masterpiece Theatre.

Set from the late Victorian era through the 1920s, the dramas follow two generations of the Forsyte family, each marked by petty jealousies, disastrous love affairs, and tragic consequences. Also starring Gina McKee (Notting Hill), Rupert Graves (V for Vendetta), Ioan Gruffudd (Horatio Hornblower), and Corin Redgrave (Trial & Retribution).

Series 1
"Wittily scripted, subtly acted" —London Evening Standard
"Sparking" —San Francisco Chronicle

A story that became a benchmark for appointment television in the 1960s returns in a lavish production with an all-star cast. Damian Lewis (Homeland, Band of Brothers) stars as Soames Forsyte, a successful London solicitor and wealthy scion of a respectable upper-middle-class Victorian family. Soames marries the beautiful Irene—all he needs to complete his golden existence—but finds that he can never truly possess her. Based on the first two of John Galsworthy’s nine books about the Forsytes, this sweeping drama follows the family through two tumultuous decades that reflect the pivotal times in which they live. Also starring Gina McKee (Notting Hill), Ioan Gruffudd (Horatio Hornblower), Rupert Graves (V for Vendetta), Corin Redgrave (Trial & Retribution), and Gillian Kearney (Sex, Chips and Rock n’ Roll)

Series 2
"Beautifully composed and acted" —The Daily Telegraph (U.K.)
"An intelligent story…excellent performances" —The Times (U.K.)

The stunning adaptation of John Galsworthy’s books about the fabled Forsyte family continues with this story of young love in the next generation. Fleur, daughter of Soames and Annette, and Jon, son of Irene and Jolyon, meet by chance as youngsters and make an indelible impression on each other. A decade later, they meet again and fall instantly—and disastrously—in love. This era in the saga of the privileged Forsytes unfolds amid the gaiety and social upheaval of the 1920s, the dawn of the modern age.

Damian Lewis (Homeland, Band of Brothers), Gina McKee (Notting Hill), and Rupert Graves (V for Vendetta) reprise their roles as Soames, Irene, and Young Jolyon, joined by Emma Griffiths Malin (The Cazalets) and Lee Williams (Billy Elliot) as the young lovers.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
40 of 42 people found the following review helpful
Note: This production has been and is available seperately as The Forsyte Saga, Series One and Two. If you already own them, this is not an upgrade with new content and there is no reason to repurchase. This is for those new to the show, you can buy both parts together.

Previously released in two installments, "The Forsyte Saga" is finally being compiled in its entirety. The first six-part Masterpiece Theater miniseries was presented in 2002 with the second story arc of four episodes airing in 2003. Based on the works of John Galsworthy, this isn't the first time British TV tackled this epic family drama. A BBC production of the same name debuted in 1967, ran for 26 episodes, and figured in both the 1968 BAFTA and the 1970 Emmy races (after it premiered stateside). Some will contend that this original presentation is better or more complete and with a considerably longer running time, I'd be hard pressed to disagree with this assessment. Be that as it may, I think this interpretation of "The Forsyte Saga" fully stands on its own as a top-notch entertainment. A great cast (led by the tremendous Damian Lewis) brings this multigenerational story to life, and it is an absolute must-own for lovers of sophisticated adult drama. While I've seen Lewis excel in everything from "Band of Brothers" to the current "Homeland," this is ultimately the role and character that I most quickly associate him with. He's truly that memorable!

The tale initially centers around Lewis (as Soames Forsyte) and his cousin Jolyon played by Rupert Graves near the end of the 1800s (the story is set over several decades). The two cousins are left to carry on the Forsyte legacy, but the two men couldn't be more different.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fabulous March 20, 2013
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the acting in this series is outstanding. my husband liked it better than pride and prejudice and we both were just so sad when the last disc ended. i would recommend this series to anyone and everyone.
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11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars lovely July 10, 2012
By derek
I have to admit i got addicted and find this series gorgeous - actors superb-costumes and setting sumptuous but i still cannot for the life of me find credible the interaction of Irene and Soames. She despises him for what seems to be no reason...and carries it forward as if he were an ogre of huge proportions which seems overblown--he is merely a controlling and uptight dude. And he has every right to be angry and frustrated with her, after all, SHE is the one who cheated, not my sympathy is actually more to Soames than Irene altho it is obvious that it is written to garner the feelings for her character....but anyway, it is enjoyable and well done despite my criticism and i give it 5.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great January 28, 2013
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This is a wonderful series. So well cast and the costumes and scenery are spectacular. If you like Dowton Abbey you will also like this. It was fun to see Damien Lewis in another role besides Homeland!
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8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
30 years of Forsyte Victorian lust, drama, scandal, romance, flamboyance, indulgence, and lovely period perfection. I've owned the series on DVD for a decade. It's been watched repeatedly. Now sets are combined for this release. Stars of this series have grown to be mega stars in other series. It caused me to buy the John Galsworthy novels. The adaptation isn't perfect; no miniseries is, even though this attempt allows much, being over 700 minutes (near 12 hours).

Series 1 had 6 episodes, series 2 had 4. All have CC for the hearing impaired.
Two 1870s Forsyte men are conflicting opposite cousins who enjoy the upper middle class living as much as the next. Soames (Damian Lewis) is the abandoning wife, artist, loose, cruel man. Jolyon (Rupert Graves -Garrow's Law) is the posh lawyer, proper, and lover of Irene (Gina McKee -Borgias, Notting Hill) who does a stellar role. Soames daughter Fleur (Emma Griffiths Malin) is a big part of his life and the story in both series 1&2. Amanda Root and Alistair Petrie (Cranford) also appear in all 10 episodes. Offspring take the lead in the second series which takes viewers to the Roaring 20s, based on the book, "To Let."

This series is done in theatre style (my terminology) where scenes roll longer, not flashing away in seconds. That allows drama to unfold through excellent acting and dialogue, not special camera effects. To me, that's the only way to shoot a saga, a telling of lives over decades. One must get to know characters. There was a larger, longer, Forsyte book adaptation series with more episodes, covering more of the books. It was the 1960s, B&W only.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A must have for your personal collection! January 19, 2013
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I gave the collection to my sister and her husband for their 25th wedding anniversary. They texted me that they made it a family viewing that captured the entire family. They watched it nonstop until they watched every episode and were disappointed when it was over. Lends itself for multiple viewings. Downton Abbey is similar.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A series not to miss for anglophiles! January 13, 2013
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This is a terrific series! I just love it. The acting is superb, the costuming correct, and the saga is splendid!
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
A gift recipient enjoyed
Published 6 days ago by Susan K.
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
excellent product and fast delivery
Published 9 days ago by Pamela Wilkolaski
4.0 out of 5 stars Enjoyable but Flawed
If you love English period romances such as Downton Abbey, Jane Eyre, Pride and Prejudice, etc., you'll probably enjoy this. Read more
Published 1 month ago by dustnik
5.0 out of 5 stars Great story about following your heart
I really liked this saga; even the bad guy had a humane side. As this story is about following your heart, it is probably not for the strict Christian. Read more
Published 2 months ago by Mozark
5.0 out of 5 stars It's WONDERFUL!!
I was able to watch the two seasons for free thru my Prime here with Amazon. I loved it so much I plan to buy the series. It is wonderfully done. Read more
Published 2 months ago by W. B.
5.0 out of 5 stars Sumptuous.
Sumptuous, romantic, compelling. The list of adjectives that could be compiled to describe this brilliant adaptation of the “Forsyte” novels of John Galsworthy would be lengthy... Read more
Published 3 months ago by Jon Wynne
2.0 out of 5 stars Disappointing
DVD does NOT have "closed captioning" as advertised. This was one of the reasons for purchasing this set.
Published 3 months ago by Charlie
4.0 out of 5 stars Happy to have my own copy of The Forsyte Saga
I am a huge fan of British Drama and I loved The Forsyte Saga when it aired on PBS several years ago. Now, I I'm thrilled to finally have my own copy of the mini series.
Published 3 months ago by Katherine L. Rollins
5.0 out of 5 stars Beatifully Done!
I remember watching the Forsyte Saga on PBS and now I own it to watch it anytime I want too.l
Published 4 months ago by Kathleen Bialecki
5.0 out of 5 stars Fosyte Saga
Was snowed in so spent the whole day with the Forsytes and several cups of tea.Enjoyed every part of it. It not only entertained but taught a lesson.
Published 4 months ago by Darlene Burnett
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