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Tipping the Velvet

DVD

4.6 out of 5 stars 142 customer reviews

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(Jan 27, 2004)
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Smitten by music hall life, and by the beautiful male impersonator Kitty Butler (Keeley Hawes), Nan Astley (Rachael Stirling) leaves her family’s Whitstable oyster parlor and follows her heart to London. There she finds unimaginable joy—and misery—as she explores the secret side of fin de siècle life.

Based on the acclaimed novel by Sarah Waters and adapted by Andrew Davies (Bridget Jones’s Diary, Doctor Zhivago), this powerful BBC drama is both a frank depiction of lesbianism and a witty and moving account of a young woman who will win your heart while searching for her own. Also starring Anna Chancellor (Pride and Prejudice), Jodhi May (The Last of the Mohicans), Hugh Bonneville (Iris) and John Bowe (Poldark). "Provocative and uplifting" ––The Baltimore Sun. "Flat-out sublime" ––The Seattle Times.

Amazon.com

"It's Pride and Prejudice with dirty bits." That's how screenwriter Andrew Davies (Bridget Jones' Diary), in an interview contained on this disc, describes his adaptation of Sarah Waters's acclaimed novel of lesbian love, betrayal, and redemption in Victorian England. This three-part BBC production chronicles with relish the story of Nan Astley (Rachael Stirling, the ravishing image of her mother, Diana Rigg), barely 18, and certain that life holds more for her than her oyster girl's existence. "You'll meet someone who'll have your head spinning and your legs turning to jelly," her sister promises. That someone surprisingly turns out to be "gay and bold" Kitty Butler (Keeley Hawes), a music-hall entertainer, with whom Nan falls instantly, and swooningly, in love. Nan follows her to London, where, as a double act, they become the toast of London, until Kitty's "marriage of convenience" breaks up the act and Nan's heart. The outcast Nan, decked out in Victor/Victoria duds, becomes a streetwalker, and then "tart" to the aptly named Diana Leatherby (Anna Chancellor). This affair, too, comes to "a bad end" as a destitute Nan is deposited back on the streets, where she insinuates herself into the lives of Florence (Jodhi May), a social worker, and her socialist brother. Is Nan "too spoiled and stained for love?" Will she risk her blossoming relationship with Florence when Kitty inevitably returns to rekindle their affair? There is enough "backbiting and bitching" to fuel several seasons of The O.C. Nan's couplings, while tastefully done, do carry what Waters, in the co-interview with Davies, calls "a queer erotic charge." They are graphic by Cinemax standards, let alone the BBC. But the sterling writing and performances will captivate even the most sensitive viewers, making this groundbreaking miniseries, to quote one character, "a delightful evening... a rare treat." --Donald Liebenson

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Special features

  • Complete UK broadcast edition
  • Interview with author Sarah Waters and Andrew Davies
  • Photo gallery

Product details

  • Actors: Rachael Stirling, Keeley Hawes, Anna Chancellor, Jodhi May, Alexei Sayle
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Anamorphic, Closed-captioned, Color, Dolby, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo)
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.78:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated:
    Unrated
    Not Rated
  • Studio: Acorn Media
  • DVD Release Date: January 27, 2004
  • Run Time: 178 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars 142 customer reviews
  • ASIN: B00011Y1QC
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #22,791 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
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Customer reviews

Top customer reviews

on August 23, 2017
Format: DVD|Verified Purchase
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on August 14, 2013
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3 helpful votes
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on January 19, 2017
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on October 31, 2017
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on November 25, 2013
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3 helpful votes
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on July 1, 2016
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on December 22, 2011
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on June 30, 2016
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