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Anthony Hopkins heads the cast as the soul-searching Pierre Bezuhov (a role for which he won the 1972 Best Actor BAFTA); Morag Hood is the impulsive and beautiful Natasha Rostova; Alan Dobie is the dour but heroic Andrei Bolkonsky; and David Swift is Napoleon, whose decision to invade Russia in 1812 has far-reaching consequences for both the Rostov and Bolkonsky families.
Includes a 44-page booklet featuring production notes, episode summaries, character profiles and stunning behind the scenes photography.
The Yugoslavia-filmed battle sequences convince with their cavalcade of extras, but the drawing-room scenes serve as the heart of the series. (The soft exteriors were shot on film; the crisp interiors on video.) In these sequences, the other Rostovs, Bolkonskys, and Bezuhovs--notably Nikolai's impetuous sister, Natasha (Morag Hood)--emerge as complex individuals. Occasional inner monologues distinguish them further. There's some overacting from a few cast members, like the splenetic Anthony Jacobs (Prince Bolkonsky), but Dobie, Angela Down (Andrei's sister, Maria), and especially BAFTA winner Hopkins, give three of the more nuanced performances. Dramatized by Jack Pulman (I, Claudius) and directed by TV veteran John Davies (Germinal), this 20-part series follows a black-and-white silent, a Hollywood production (with Henry Fonda and Audrey Hepburn), and an Oscar-winning Russian epic. The British edition, however, stands as the most complete adaptation. As Pulman stated at the time, "Part of the novel's effect is achieved by its sheer weight of detail, the piling up of incident upon incident." After 15 increasingly compelling hours of marriages, affairs, births, duels, and deaths, it's hard not to feel a kinship with these fatefully entwined families. --Kathleen C. Fennessy
Hopkins performance as Count Pierre Bezukhov was superior to that of Henry Fonda in the 1956 film, who was miscast in my opinion. Read morePublished 16 days ago by mac
This series marked the first time I saw Anthony Hopkins in anything -- well before his days as Hannibal Lector, and playing a much different character: the bumbling, good-hearted... Read morePublished 2 months ago by Divascribe
By far the best adaption of Tolstoy's War and Peace. It follows the book's plot very closely and includes many of the minor characters from the book, which give it its 'life'. Read morePublished 2 months ago by Frances Ingram
Great condition and very happy. However, there was something which was supposedly to be included with it that I believe was missing. Read morePublished 2 months ago by Colleen G. McShea
There has never been a better screen adaptation of War and Peace than this version by the BBC from their golden age. Ever, ever. Read morePublished 4 months ago by Julie Merwin
great movie, best rendition of this movie I have seen. Have read book 3 times and this is very good book to movie depiction.Published 4 months ago by Susan Engelmann
Of all the Russian novelists, I find Tolstoy the must difficult to get through. I think it is the propensity of names that one must remember and the fact that each character seems... Read morePublished 4 months ago by Banjo Baba