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Another Country

4.3 out of 5 stars 54 customer reviews

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(Sep 07, 2004)
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Editorial Reviews

An indictment of the British class system dressed up like a Ralph Lauren ad, Another Country is the movie that made a very young and very gorgeous Rupert Everett a star. Whatever other ideas it has knocking around its head (and there are quite a lot of them), director Marek Kanievska's adaptation of Julian Mitchell's play is first and foremost a star vehicle for Everett, who played the openly gay main character with a vigor, flair, and smoldering appeal that was rarely seen onscreen in the early '80s. Everett is Guy Bennett, a charming, confident schoolboy in 1930s England who yearns to climb to the top of the social strata at his Eton-like school. His ambitions, however, are waylaid by the young and equally gorgeous James Harcourt (Cary Elwes), with whom he begins a passionate yet secret affair. Soon, however, Guy finds that balancing his love and his ambition is a no-win situation, and that no matter how hard he bucks against it, the ages-old traditional structures of British class and etiquette won't yield in his wake. Added to all this E.M. Forster-style drama and romance is the fact that Guy later on becomes a spy for the Russians against England; it's a weighty theme to drop on the movie, and the fact that it's a true story just shows how less than artfully the film unfolds. Still, holding it all together is the sublime Everett, who took this persona of the classy, beautiful, passionate, British gay man and ran with it throughout the '80s and '90s. With Colin Firth as Everett's Marxist (and heterosexual) compatriot. --Mark Englehart

Special Features

  • News itme from the 1984 Cannes Film Festival
  • Discussion of the original play with actors Kenneth Branagh, Rupert Everett and author Julian Mitchell
  • Scrapbook of posters, articles, and photographs
  • Selections from the original score

Product Details

  • Actors: Rupert Everett, Colin Firth, Michael Jenn, Robert Addie, Rupert Wainwright
  • Directors: Marek Kanievska
  • Writers: Julian Mitchell
  • Producers: Alan Marshall, Julian Seymour, Robert Fox
  • Format: Anamorphic, Closed-captioned, Color, Special Edition, NTSC
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 5.1), French (Unknown)
  • Subtitles: French
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated:
    Parental Guidance Suggested
  • Studio: BBC Warner
  • DVD Release Date: September 7, 2004
  • Run Time: 90 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (54 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0002ABUNY
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #109,276 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Another Country" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Thomas Lapins on September 12, 2004
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
I first saw 'Another Country' on the big screen in 1984. I was thirty and still an idealist and romantic. 'Another country' allows one the opportunity to bathe and flutter in all the glory of one's youth and youthful expectations. The film is not so much about straight vs. gay but, rather, about the traditionalist/conformist vs. the out of the box thinking of 'commies and queers'. It clearly draws the line between those who desire to march to the music of the masses, those who love to cloak themselves in mindless ritual and tradition, honors and awards, the applause and approval of those who can best serve their endless, though limited, ambitions and expectations vs. those who see the utter waste and stupidity and vulgarity of being part of the herd, those who think and question and act with an understanding beyond the politics and drama of the 'norm'.

'Another Country' holds up twenty years later. Rupert Everett embodies the grace of the upper class, the intelligence of the radical, and the poetry of the true romantic. 'Another Country' is filmed in the English tradition of good taste and endless esthetics, in the same way as "A Room With A View,' 'Maurice,' and 'Passage To India'. Idealism and romance are not the stuff of reality, but of the heart and mind and soul. It is important to be warmed and inspired and desired within the universe of the self, and 'Another Country' does that for me. Highly, highly recommended.
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Format: DVD
In 1983 Julian Mitchell wrote a play based on fact about a young man (Guy Bennett) who, seeing the constraints of British society circa 1930, embraces his sexuality in a time when even the words were criminal, sees through the sad folly of the British class and empire system, and eventually abandons England to become a spy for Russia. The played starred a young 21-year-old Rupert Everett and a 20-year-old Kenneth Branagh as Guy's heterosexual roommate Tommy Judd, an obsessed Marxist as ready to leap out of the norm of British society as Guy - but for different reasons. Director Marek Kanievska adapted Mitchell's challenging play for the screen, and in 1984 ANOTHER COUNTRY became a sterling recreation of the play and a controversial film introducing the extraordinarily talented and continuingly popular Rupert Everett (who remains one of the few 'out' actors enjoying success in Hollywood). Colin Firth assumed the role of Tommy and Cary Elwes became the gay love interest for Everett's Guy Bennett. The film is one of the finest examinations of the rigid, archaically proper British schools for young men (Eton) where class is paramount in importance, rank reigns, and medieval views of sexuality and out of line thought are treated with public corporal punishment and (worst of all!) the inability to rise in the ranks of the 'important' lads. Throughout the film there is a powerful parallel between Guy's striving to become the head of the class being thwarted by his pursuing is passion for his love of men, and the 'religious zeal' approach of Tommy's absorption in Marxism, seeing Communism as the only way to correct the 'vile sickness' of current British politics and social strata.Read more ›
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
I have been a fan of this film for a long time and was glad to see it released on DVD.

This story is loosely based on the real life of a British aristocrat turned spy for Russia. Instead of detailing the main character's (Guy Bennett)adult transformation from British upper class citizen to traitor, we are treated to a more subtle story of what led the young Bennett to become disenfranchised with his British high class status and how his formative years at the prestigious Eton College, laid the foundation for his ultimate treachery.

The story is told by an elderly Guy Bennet in his Russian flat as he is speaking to a British reporter about his decision to turn against his native England and become a spy for Russia. He explains to the reporter that in order to understand his decision, one must understand the constrained up-bringing of upper class British youth, which he then goes on to recount.

The film is set against the beautiful backdrop of Eton College, the school where not only the british upper class sends their sons, but also the British royals. The cinematography is outstanding, as is the musical score- both are dark and brooding but capture both the beauty and tradition of 1930's England.

The tension in the movie is between Guy's need to be honest about his sexuality while also fitting in with the ultra-conformist status quo represented by the school's elite ruling class boys, the 'Gods'. Guy Bennet yearns to be part of the school's elite group, all the while bucking the traditional structure by mocking the rules, maintaining a friendship with his Marxist roommate and taking part in an illicit love affair with another boy.
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Another country, was an enjoyable film. The storyline was enough to draw me in and keep me watching. The acting quality was exceptional and the production quality was top quality. The story is one of acceptance between outcasts and the effects of rejection from the snobish upperclass of the time. It is set around 1930 in England. Rupert Everett plays the lead and did an outstanding job. Because of the vintage setting the film has little profanity by todays standard and not much in the way of nudity. The storty is well written. This is a good addition to my collection and was an excellent investment. It's clean enough for the conservitive, gay friendly folks and most who watch will find that they relate to the story on some level. We have all felt like outcasts at one time or the other in our lives. I'm sure You will enjoy this film.
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