Vanity Fair

Vanity Fair

4.7 7
Director: Marc Munden

Cast: Marc Munden, Natasha Little

     
 

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Though not the most ambitious British TV adaptation of William Makepeace Thackeray's 19th century novel Vanity Fair, this six-part BBC1 version was arguably the most expensive and elaborate. Natasha Little was cast as scheming country lass Becky Sharp, who managed to climb to the top of the British social ladder during and after the Napoleonic Wars, leaving aSee more details below

Overview

Though not the most ambitious British TV adaptation of William Makepeace Thackeray's 19th century novel Vanity Fair, this six-part BBC1 version was arguably the most expensive and elaborate. Natasha Little was cast as scheming country lass Becky Sharp, who managed to climb to the top of the British social ladder during and after the Napoleonic Wars, leaving a trail of broken hearts, betrayed friendships, and shattered reputations in her wake. Somehow, however, Becky always managed to land on her feet, and after mending her ways in middle age, she lived out her declining years as a much-beloved "Lady Bountiful." Debuting in Britain on November 1, 1998, Vanity Fair subsequently aired as part of the American public TV Masterpiece Theatre anthology beginning October 24, 1999.

Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Mike Cummings
For those who like leading ladies with spice and bite, director Marc Munden's 1998 adaptation of Vanity Fair is for them. It portrays Becky Sharp just as William Makepeace Thackeray (1811-1863) wrote her -- as a cunning, unprincipled, manipulative social climber who is so beguiling that no man can resist her. Like a flame attracting moths, she lures men to the refulgence of her beauty and charm -- and then the intrigue begins. Natasha Little portrays Becky. She is so deliciously devious in the role that the viewer almost roots for her as she connives and double-crosses. But will she change? Is she really an Austen-esque heroine in disguise who will doff her nasty ways after undergoing childbirth and other life events? Fans of the novel, in which Thackeray satirizes the pretensions of 19th century England's middle and upper classes, already know the answer to that question. Andrew Davies, who wrote the script for the highly successful BBC production of Pride and Prejudice, also adapted Thackeray's novel for this BBC-A&E production. The film contains much of the same kind of clever repartee as Pride and Prejudice, and the characters are well-drawn and the actors well-cast. Nathaniel Parker -- with his good looks, mustache, and insouciant manner -- bears a strong resemblance to Rhett Butler in his portrayal of Captain Rawdon Crawley, a card-playing rogue who has the same kind of stormy relationship with Becky as Butler does with Scarlett O'Hara. Other actors serve mostly as caricatures representing typical English men and women of the day: Jeremy Swift as the self-satisfied Jos Sedley, Frances Grey as the cloyingly sweet Amelia Sedly, and Philip Glenister as the long-suffering admirer of Amelia, Colonel Dobbin, who is the only honest and upright character in Vanity Fair. Filmed in England, Wales, France, and Germany, the production features lavish sets and period costumes -- including redingotes, Regency evening gowns, and crisp military uniforms -- to accentuate the 19th century ambience. However, Murray Gold's musical score may be a bit too modern in its impudent sarcasm, at least for some viewers.

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Product Details

Release Date:
08/16/2011
UPC:
0733961250244
Original Release:
1998
Source:
A&E Home Video
Time:
5:00:00

Cast & Crew

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Scene Index

Disc #1 -- Vanity Fair
1. Au Revoir Mes Amie [9:32]
2. If It Comes From India [6:30]
3. A Man of Decision [8:32]
4. Very Bad Stuff [10:28]
5. Sir Pitt [8:19]
6. Queens Crawley [8:32]
1. Arcadian Simplicity [7:26]
2. Snake in the Grass [6:26]
3. Dearest George [7:43]
4. Can't Help a Pedigree [4:46]
5. Married Already [5:23]
6. Bad Business [12:54]
1. Up and Out [6:08]
2. Without Consent [7:30]
3. Amelia and George Marry [11:45]
4. The Air at Brighton [8:40]
5. Bread and Butter [8:55]
6. Off to War [6:53]
Disc #2 -- Vanity Fair - Volume Two
1. What Women Suffer [8:45]
2. Cowards Indeedd [9:12]
3. A Hero's Death [7:59]
4. A Small Inheritance [8:47]
5. High Society [10:11]
6. Generous and Forgiving [7:02]
1. A Genuine Interest [7:38]
2. A Memorable Day [6:00]
3. A Mother's Love [10:48]
4. Faults in Character [1:45]
5. Keeping Up Appearances [7:22]
6. Paid For [8:13]
1. Ruined [8:30]
2. A Man of Sense [6:41]
3. A Safe Heart [9:09]
4. An Old Friend [8:33]
5. The Greatest Prize [10:01]
6. A Woman More Generous [9:01]

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