Far From The Madding Crowd 1998

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(49) IMDb 7.7/10
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Far From The Madding Crowd is an evocative and sumptuous adaptation of Thomas Hardy's classic novel set in the 19th Century. The arrival of Bathsheba Everdene (Paloma Baeza) as mistress of Weatherbury Farm causes quite a stir in the all-male environment of the Corn Exchange. A beautiful and proud youg woman with a fiercely independent spirit, she soon ensnares and almost destroys the lives of the three men who love her - local shepherd Gabriel Oak (Nathaniel Parker), gentleman famer Mr Boldwood (Nigel Terry) and the womanising Sergeant Frank Troy (Jonathan Firth).

Starring:
Nigel Terry, Jonathan Firth
Rental Formats:
DVD

Product Details

Discs
  • Feature ages_12_and_over
Starring Nigel Terry, Jonathan Firth, Nathanial Parker, Paloma Baeza
Director Nicholas Renton
Genres Drama
Studio ITV
Rental release 29 September 2003
Main languages English

Other Formats

Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

162 of 164 people found the following review helpful By Jill on 2 Dec 2007
Format: DVD
I have watched this so many times that my original VHS-format is falling to pieces! One of Hardy's most accessible novels, this story quite daringly (for its time) deals with such issues as love, patience and the -- often devastating -- effects of human sexuality. It is all done, though, with great humanity and even the villain has some redeeming features. There's little black-and-white in Hardy's portraits of the three men all humming around Bathsheba like bees. Nor is she herself a simplistic character.

As with the best of British television costume dramas, this 1998 version features some very well-known and -loved actors, although I believe that Paloma Baeza may not have been so well-known when she was cast as the female lead. Nathaniel Parker is simply stunning -- and irresistible -- as the superb Gabriel Oak (a more appropriate name for his character could not have been devised), and Jonathan Firth is very fine indeed as Sergeant Troy -- this may be his best role yet on the small screen.

The music is charming; the settings and costumes are perfect... Sit back for a few hours, and simply bask in the the warmth of this production. I can't recommend it highly enough.
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75 of 79 people found the following review helpful By Job on 4 Mar 2008
Format: DVD
This is really a great adaptation of the novel - true to not only the plot but as often as possible to Hardy's very conversations. The actors are uniformly excellent, assisted by the subtle, well-paced script, gorgeous scenery and involving plot. I don't think a better version of FFTMC will ever be made and absolutely recommend it to anyone who is a fan of Hardy - or of just sitting in front of an absorbing, fascinating, passionate and sexy costume drama for a few hours!
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50 of 53 people found the following review helpful By Roger-Marie Howes on 25 Aug 2005
Format: DVD
I thoroughly enjoyed this production - it is closer to Hardy's novel than the earlier version starring Julie Christie. Baeza's reading of Bathsheba Everdine is excellent, totally in character. She skillfully combines Bathsheba's independent spirit with both her youth and naivety. She is at all times consistent and convincing. In the Julie Christie version, Christie overplayed the role, moving away from Hardy's intention, and came close at times to trivialising the character. Also, she did not consistently capture the youthfulness and innocence of Bathsheba. The Everdine/Troy sword scene was also overplayed in the Christie version, including sequences that were not in the novel and which, quite honestly, reduced the emotional impact of this (very important) scene. In the Baeza version, this better captures the emotion of the meeting and adds to the superiority of this version.
The supporting cast (particularly the other key roles) and production is excellent, as it was in the Christie version, although the Christie version veered away from the novel in some points that seemed unnecessary and a bit confusing.
For me, however, Baeza's grasp of Bathsheba was perfect, showing her for the talented young actress she is, and it is this that rates this version, for me, well above the Christie version.
I would recommend this version to any one.
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36 of 39 people found the following review helpful By Irish Critic on 11 Sep 2008
Format: DVD
One of Thomas Hardy's best-loved novels is sensitively and accurately dramatised in this 1998 classic.

Upon inheriting her uncle's farm, the beautiful and assertive Bathsheba Everdene (Paloma Baeza) is the most sought after maiden in the whole of Weatherbury. She's forced to choose between the affections of three very different men; local shepherd Gabriel Oak, gentleman farmer Mr. Boldwood and the womanising Sargeant Frank Troy. Here, Hardy's classic tale of love, betrayal and tragedy is faithfully dramatised. The 1967 Julie Christie version is good, but this is even better!
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Anon on 11 July 2009
Format: DVD
I absolutely loved this TV adaptation of Thomas Hardy's classic. I studied the novel for my English Language and Literature degree and thoroughly enjoyed it and was concerned that I might not enjoy the TV version quite as much. However, I needn't have worried as this is a fantastic adaptation and as a fan of the text I was pleasantly surprised how faithful this adaptation was to the novel, even using some of Hardy's original dialogue. At times I found myself laughing out loud and at other times I was completely choked up. The cast are all excellent particularly Nathaniel Parker as the loyal and selfless Gabriel Oak and Nigel Terry as the obsessive and desperate William Boldwood. I enjoyed this version much more than the 1967 Julie Christie version and I would thoroughly recommend this dvd whether you're studying English Literature or not.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Fortuna on 28 Nov 2014
Format: DVD
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I didn't think it was possible. I'd always loved the 1967 Julie Christie version with Alan Bates as the upright shephard Gabriel Oak. But having seen this version, then reading the book (amazingly readable) and re-watching the 1967 version, I definitely give my vote to Nathaniel Parker as my favorite Gabriel. (OK, so he's even cuter than Alan Bates circa 1967, so that part's a no-brainer!)

Seriously, comparing the two versions and the book (which is more Gabriel Oak's story), it is obvious how the Alan Bates part in the 1967 version was butchered to create more screen-time for Terrance Stamp and Peter Finch as well as Julie Christie. It also became apparent to me that Julie Christie was too old for the part. Paloma Baeza is much more realistic (and likable) as the headstrong, impetuous Bathsheba. I also liked the fact that there seemed to be more passion seething just beneath Gabriel Oak's surface veneer than in the 1967 version. The final scenes where she accepts his proposal and post-wedding are a lot more passionate (still without a single kiss, alas!) than the cool (dispassionate) ending of the 1967 version.
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