Cold Comfort Farm

( 8 )

Overview

Stella Gibbons' popular novel was published in 1932, and it has been adapted twice for British television, first as a miniseries in 1971, then by director John Schlesinger in 1995. That version proved so popular that it was released to theaters in the U.S. The heroine of Gibbons' story, Flora Poste (Kate Beckinsale), is an aspiring young writer with two needs: material for her first novel, and a cheap place to live and work. A wealthy friend encourages her to take advantage of her country cousins and impose upon ...
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Overview

Stella Gibbons' popular novel was published in 1932, and it has been adapted twice for British television, first as a miniseries in 1971, then by director John Schlesinger in 1995. That version proved so popular that it was released to theaters in the U.S. The heroine of Gibbons' story, Flora Poste (Kate Beckinsale), is an aspiring young writer with two needs: material for her first novel, and a cheap place to live and work. A wealthy friend encourages her to take advantage of her country cousins and impose upon them for lodgings. Flora finds Cold Comfort Farm to be a ramshackle affair populated by eccentrics including the imperious Ada Doom (Sheila Burrell), her daughter Judith (Eileen Atkins), Judith's rough but handsome son Seth (Rufus Sewell), and Amos (Ian McKellen), an amateur preacher whose sermonizing seems to release some kind of demons within him. Undaunted by this menagerie, Flora gets to work organizing the household, and she comes to realize that the material for her book is right in front of her.
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Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Tom Wiener
Cold Comfort Farm is a welcome late-career success from the inconsistent John Schlesinger, who got off to a smashing start in the '60s with Billy Liar, Darling, Far From the Madding Crowd, and Midnight Cowboy, only to stumble through the next several decades with less memorable work. Stella Gibbons' novel is replete with colorful characters and wacky situations, but it would be too easy to give over the show to the country cousins. Fortunately, Schlesinger and his collaborators found their Flora in Kate Beckinsale, a brilliant actress whose only previous film role of note was that of Hero in Much Ado About Nothing. Beckinsale makes Flora a fascinating combination of naïveté and bossiness. She is oblivious to the darker natures of her country relatives and their neighbors, but she is also completely determined to improve their lives. (Perhaps the contradictions actually feed off one another.) While Flora bustles about, straightening, dusting, and re-arranging, her subjects act bewildered, amused, put-upon, and relieved that someone besides the selfish Ada Doom is in charge. Of all the scenery chewers in this cast of first-rate performers, no one masticates as loudly and as amusingly as Ian McKellen as the Reverend Amos Starkadder. The film is a delight from start to predictable finish. Fans of the French hit Amelie may find that their heroine from that film has a charming predecessor in Flora Poste.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 6/17/1997
  • UPC: 096898295932
  • Original Release: 1995
  • Rating:

  • Source: Universal Studios
  • Format: VHS

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Kate Beckinsale Flora Poste
Sheila Burrell Ada Doom
Eileen Atkins Judith Starkadder
Ian McKellen Amos Starkadder
Ivan Kaye
Rufus Sewell Seth Starkadder
Freddie Jones Adam Lambsbreath
Maria Miles Elfine Starkadder
Joanna Lumley Mrs. Smiling
Stephen Fry Mybug
Miriam Margolyes Mrs. Beetle
Angela Thorne Mrs. Hawke-Monitor
Technical Credits
John Schlesinger Director
Richard Broke Producer
Noel Davis Casting
Mark Day Editor
Alison Gilby Producer
Jim Greenhorn Sound/Sound Designer
Jim Holloway Art Director
Robert Lockhart Score Composer, Songwriter
Malcolm Bradbury Screenwriter
Amy Roberts Costumes/Costume Designer
Antony Root Producer
Chris Seager Cinematographer
Malcolm Thornton Production Designer
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 8 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(7)

4 Star

(1)

3 Star

(0)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(0)

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Sort by: Showing all of 8 Customer Reviews
  • Posted October 1, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    A Must-Own, See Again film

    I owned it as a VHS tape, now I own it as a DVD after renting it twice from Netflix. Simply wonderful. A friend who read the book first prefers that - after she loaned me the book, I still prefer the film. The book does clear up some not-so-clear points of the film (some of it simply accent-related), but the film condenses the multitude of characters in the book, in a way that makes more sense at the ending. SO funny, especially if you're familiar with British folkways. Love Lord Peter Wimsey? You'll be ga-ga over Cold Comfort Farm.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    "Such Good Fun"

    This is a movie for anyone who took English Literature classes, or who just enjoys subtle - and not so subtle satire. The performances are all excellent especially Eileen Atkins and Ian McKellen. It should be a requirement for English majors.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    I love British comedy!!!!

    This is such a pleasant surprise! It is now one of my favorite movies. Great story, the characters are hilarious, as the plot unfolds there are always surprises to the very end.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Very Good Film Adaptation of Cold Comfort Farm!

    This is the review for the movie adaptation of the book Cold Comfort Farm. It is a very good movie about a woman from the city named Flora Poste who after losing her parents trys to find relatives to take her in and the only ones who respond with an invitation are her wacky relatives in the country at Cold Comfort Farm which includes a domineering woman who hasn't come out of her room in years all because she says she saw something nasty in the woodshed! This is a weird but very good movie and the cast is great, but I especially liked Kate Beckinsale, Rufus Sewell and the actors who played Elfine, Ada Doom, and Judith. By the way: Just be aware while watching this movie that if sometimes you don't understand what the people at Cold Comfort Farm are sayng that it is intentional because sometimes the character of Flora doesn't understand what they are saying and just pretends that she does! 4 1/2 stars!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Wacky English Humour

    This book is one of my all time favourites. My aunt gave it to me to read, and I couldn't put it down. You get drawn in to this weird and wonderful household, and you REALLY want to know what Aunt Ada Doom saw in the woodshed, I'm not giving it away, read it and laugh!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 10, 2009

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 5, 2010

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 26, 2009

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