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Mrs. Dalloway (1998)

Vanessa Redgrave , Natascha McElhone , Marleen Gorris  |  PG-13 |  DVD
3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (55 customer reviews)

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Mrs. Dalloway + The Hours
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Product Details

  • Actors: Vanessa Redgrave, Natascha McElhone, Michael Kitchen, Rupert Graves, Lena Headey
  • Directors: Marleen Gorris
  • Writers: Eileen Atkins, Virginia Woolf
  • Producers: Simon Curtis, Christopher Ball, Hans De Weers, Bill Shepherd, Paul Frift
  • Format: Color, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: PG-13 (Parental Guidance Suggested)
  • Studio: Millennium
  • DVD Release Date: May 25, 2004
  • Run Time: 97 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (55 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0001US7Q8
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #43,724 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Mrs. Dalloway" on IMDb

Special Features


Editorial Reviews

Vanessa Redgrave, Natascha McElhone. While preparing for a lavish party in her home, an aging Englishwoman reflects on the choices she's made in life in this stirring drama. 1997/color/97 min/PG-13.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
106 of 110 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Rethinking what might have been... July 15, 2001
Format:VHS Tape
This 1997 film stars Vanessa Redgrave as Mrs. Dalloway, the Englishwoman introduced in Virginia Woolf's 1925 novel. The book used stream of consciousness to create an interior monologue for her heroine and the film is true to that, a voice-over narration letting the viewer know her interior thoughts as she goes about preparing for a party in 1923.
Mrs. Dalloway is now in her sixties, but there are flashbacks to an earlier time, when she was a young woman being pursued by beaus. She has made her choices now and has married a cabinet member and leads a comfortable life as his charming wife. In her youth she rejected the suitor who looked for adventure in India as well as the tentative hint of a friendship with a woman, which might have gone further. When both of them show up at her party, her memories surface. There's also a sub-story of a young man who has been shell-shocked from combat in The Great War and the theme of suicide runs strong throughout the plot. Even though he and Mrs. Dalloway never meet, it is clear why this character was introduced. And it is also interesting to note that Virginia Woolf herself committed suicide in 1941 at the age of 59.
Casting is excellent, acting superb. Everything is understated but yet very very clear. I also loved the cinematography and the setting of a very proper London in 1923, especially the costumes. The theme is universal as we all do look back on our lives and wonder what might have been. Also, at only 97 minutes long, the video was exactly the right length. Definitely recommended.
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50 of 52 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The original version of The Hours January 12, 2003
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
If you are a fan of either the novel or film The Hours, then reading and watching Mrs. Dalloway is a must. The Hours was Virginia Woolf's original title for Mrs. Dalloway. Michael Cunningham cleverly took that title and turned into a novel that matches Mrs. Dalloway for its shear beauty. But this is a movie review and I can tell you that Vanessa Redgrave is brilliant in the title role. She should have been nominated for an Oscar at the very least. A day in the life of Clarissa Dalloway, planning a party, remembering her life and loves. It's a lovely adaptation from Woolf's novel. And of course begins with "Mrs. Dalloway decided she would buy the flowers herself." Buy this yourself. You won't regret it.
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33 of 36 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Lovers of the book will surely relish this! October 20, 1999
I never imagined a book such as Mrs. Dalloway could be effectively adapted into film...until now. What a lark! What a plunge! Indeed... I found almost all of the characters casted for this film nearly perfect -- and of course, in my opinion, no one could play Mrs. Dalloway so subtly and touchingly as Vanessa Redgrave. What touched me most about the movie were the tantalizing returns to the youthful past, where young Clarissa plays about, laughs, and trades amusing remarks with her friends Sally and Peter Walsh, the man who who loves her helplessly, passionately. It's a moving book, and the movie does justice to the complicated and intertwined ironies of life. As an immense fan of Virginia's work, I must say the telling moment of Sally's kiss is incredibly well done. A new favorite on my video shelf, something I will return to over and over.
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17 of 17 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Mrs. Dalloway plans a party and remembers young Clarissa September 25, 2004
Virginia Woolf's novel "Mrs. Dalloway" examines one day in the life of Clarissa Dalloway, in which the title character prepares for a party and looks back on the point in her life when she choose Richard Dalloway over Peter Walsh. Meanwhile, the mentally ill war veteran Septimus Warren Smith spends his last day on earth. The action of the novel exists primarily in the consciousness of the characters, for the story itself is essentially plotless and written in the stream-of-consciousness style of James Joyce. Although written in the omniscient third-person voice, Woolf manages to enter the consciousness of her various characters, who are not as unconnected as they might seem to be, and reveal their feelings.

Translating this novel to the screen requires that it be done by those who have a strong understanding and affection for the authors and her characters. Vanessa Redgrave is clearly one of those people and she commissioned Eileen Atkins to write the script so that she could play the title character. Atkins is a Woolf scholar who not only played the author in a one-woman stage piece but also wrote "Vita and Virginia," in which she and Redgrave played Woolf and her lover Vita Sackville-West. Atkins chooses to allow us only into the inner thoughts of Mrs. Dalloway, using voice-over narration to reveal the thoughts that she would never speak out loud. Those who have read the novel might not enjoy the film more than those who have not, since there are always limitations with bringing any literary masterpiece to the screen, but they will certainly understand it more, especially the first part of the film.

A strength of this 1997 film is how easily we accept that Natascha McElhone as the young Clarissa grows up to be Vanessa Redgrave's Mrs. Dalloway.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A superb viewing experience November 8, 2002
This film verson of Virginia Woolf's meditation on the relative nature of time and space, on the passing of the empire where the sun never sets (the Indian trouble is here in the offing) is superb. Is Clarissa Dalloway's party one of the empire's final celebratory moments? The passing of the old, pre-World War One lifestyle is richly evoked, as is the anxiety of the principals as they head into desuetude and hand over the reins to such as Miss Kilman and those whom Lady Bruxton would exile to Canada. The casting is excellent, with Vanessa Redgrave, Michael Kitchen, Robert Hardy and Margaret Tyzack among the notables; Rupert Graves as Septimus Smith is simply beyond praise. This is a superb viewing experience in every way.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Like it?
I haven't read it yet, I am looking forward to reading it. I just have so many books I am reading right now I just can't add another. Maybe in the summer.
Published 8 days ago by Saundra Van Luven
4.0 out of 5 stars Mrs. Dalloway
As we get older one looks back at our life and wonders have we done well. This is a period film that will touch your heart and answer that question "Have I done well" well... Read more
Published 20 days ago by Doug
5.0 out of 5 stars Vanessa shines.
Vanessa shines. A beautiful rendering of a classic tale. On the morning of a party I find myself talking about the flowers in her voice.
Published 21 days ago by DFrance
5.0 out of 5 stars Mrs. Dalloway
I thoroughly enjoyed this film, though anything with Vanessa Redgrave in it is sure to please. Such a lovely love story and so tenderly told.
Published 2 months ago by Rosie Wilson
3.0 out of 5 stars Disapointed
I love Vanessa Redgrave acting. But this one, I don't know. She's not a happy camper in this one. Disliked.
Published 3 months ago by rutelina
5.0 out of 5 stars My girl
love vanessa redgrave.
She is a magical actress and I would watch her read a phone book if she wanted to.
Published 4 months ago by Donna C.
5.0 out of 5 stars Mrs Dalloway, DVD
It's a beautifully told story. Redgrave is fantastic. Absolutely great ensemble cast. Such an influential story. And a set of beautiful love stories.
Published 5 months ago by Janice200
3.0 out of 5 stars hmmmm
We watched this movie because Michael Kitchen, from Foyle's War, was in it. The movie was well acted and photographed but was basically a total bore. Don't bother.
Published 7 months ago by David L. Keltner
4.0 out of 5 stars Sad and good at the same time.
I love Vanessa Redgrave - that's why I watched it. She was wonderful in it. The story was sad in parts though. Read more
Published 8 months ago by Pauline Erickson
3.0 out of 5 stars Good Movie
Excellent acting of Vanesa Redgrave
It has good acting of the rest of the characters. But I expected a Little more of it.
Published 9 months ago by sandra convers
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