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GBH [DVD] [1991]

32 customer reviews

Price: £44.84
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GBH [DVD] [1991] + Boys from the Blackstuff [DVD] + Our Friends In The North BBC [DVD] [1996]
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Product details

  • Actors: Julie Walters, Robert Lindsay, Michael Palin, Lindsay Duncan, Nellie Violet Clark
  • Format: PAL
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: English
  • Subtitles For The Hearing Impaired: English
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 4:3 - 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 4
  • Classification: 15
  • Studio: Channel 4
  • DVD Release Date: 12 Jun. 2006
  • Run Time: 567 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (32 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000F9REZU
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 35,596 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Reviews

Product Description

Alan Bleasdale’s G.B.H. [1991] is a darkly humorous epic about power, corruption and madness--played out in the conflict between an enigmatic politician, Michael Murray (Robert Lindsay), and his nemesis, schoolteacher Jim Nelson (Michael Palin). Nelson defies a Murray-inspired 24-hour strike and inadvertently steals the limelight when it is picked up by the press. While Murray seeks revenge in what is initially a one-sided fight, we slowly discover the secrets in his past that will cause his carefully constructed world to unravel. Then, just when the pressure of public life and power games start getting on top of him, a beautiful woman arrives on the scene…

Synopsis

When the politically ambitious Michael Murray meets headmaster, Jim Nelson, their lives are changed forever.

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

82 of 84 people found the following review helpful By elamgar on 2 July 2006
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
One of the greatest examples of television drama, Alan Bleasdale's masterpiece has lost none of its power in the 15 years since first broadcast and----while Michael Palin and Lindsay Duncan have moved on to projects that highlighted their talents better---Robert Lindsay has never come close to even equalling, let alone eclipsing, this work. His portrayal of Michael Murray---sometime Derek Hatton, sometime Dr Strangelove, sometime victim---is perfect, making an unlikeable, corrupt bully completely sympathetic to the viewer.

If this was being made today, it would be six episodes of 50 minutes. In 1991, it was seven parts of uneven lengths, allowing even the peripheral characters the opportunity to shine. Politically, it may be a Guardian reader's wishful thinking----a liberal fable, like much of The West Wing. Dramatically, it's almost Dickensian with its characters and Shakespearean with its plot.

Michael Palin shines as the epitome of decency; Lindsay Duncan is her usual luminous perfection; and Robert Lindsay is just fantastic in the role of a lifetime. Sterling work by a marvellous cast, with particular praise for David Ross's Mr Weller and Philp Whitchurch as Franky Murray.

This is the kind of thing we do best---playing to our strengths, with our own cultural references and no concerns about how it will be sold to the US. If you like British drama, buy this. I didn't use the word "masterpiece" lightly.
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48 of 51 people found the following review helpful By R. Fox on 9 July 2006
Format: DVD
This is one of a select few British dramas that is a genuine classic. Alan Bleasdale's writing has the range you'd expect but it's the casting that seasls its place. Michael Palin is superb as Jim Nelson the quiet schoolteacher with the steely resolve, with Lindsay Duncan also superb. The supporting cast of Bleasdale regulars such as Julie Walter, Tom Georgeson and Andrew Schofield also excel, but none of them can match the virtuoso performance of Robert Lindsay as corrupt Labour council leader Michael Murray.

Loosely based on Derek Hatton, his character's gradual disintegration as his carefully built facade comes crashing down around him is one of the all time great comic drama performances in this multi-layered critique of the loony left and the shadowy figures in the margins of British politics.

The plot is superbly constructed, written and acted with the right mix of comedy, drama, tension and tragedy. At this price it's unmissable, and is worth it for episode 4 alone where Murray's desperate antics are surreally set off by a Dr. Who convention.

Genius.
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29 of 31 people found the following review helpful By Drama Critic ... on 15 Jun. 2006
Format: DVD
A fantastic drama from the pen of Alan Bleasdale, richly deserves to be listed amongst the greats of TV dramas series such as Edge of Darkness and The Singing Detective.

Pretty much faultless performances from everyone involved, especially Michael Palin and Robert Lindsay. The emotional involevement is tremendous and extremely rewarding for the viewer. The storyline is multi-layered as are the first class characters.

A must see. Brilliant.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Richard the CRUX on 29 Nov. 2013
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
I bought this because it was Alan Bleasdale. I remembered his Boys from the Black Stuff, especially Yossers story being nitty-gritty, realistic and well written but I couldn't remember this at all so I thought I would give it a try. As I watched I began to recall Bleasdale's writing style and how he switches from abject depression or graphic violence to hilarious comedy in an instant. When this works it is fantastic as in Yossers story in the confession box where Yosser is falling apart, your heart is breaking for him and suddenly the priest tells him he can call him Dan and Yosser cries 'I'm desperate Dan', suddenly you just fall apart laughing, in an instant you swap between two emotional extremes. Brilliant, classic stuff, when it works. When you see through this trick it can become annoying and unfortunately, this happens in GBH. There are some classic moments and the riot scenes brought back a few memories, although I think they are a little over the top but overall I was disappointed, maybe I was expecting too much. There are some good performances all round but sometimes they breach that barrier between show-stopping acting and over-egging the pudding, the illusion is lost and is difficult to regain. The plot is very drawn out and ambles about too much for me, I prefer a plot that is more keenly focused and stays constantly in the centre of the action. In it's favour, the plot does unfold in a nice chronological order, as opposed to more modern offerings that are riddled with time zone shifting, flashbacks, montages and over-fast frame rates.Read more ›
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Nabil Shaban on 30 Nov. 2012
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
GBH [DVD] [1991] Alan Bleasdale's GBH is brilliant, but then so much of what we in Britain produced from the Seventies through to the Nineties was superior to American TV drama. Quite frankly, we continually put the Yanks to shame with our top quality intelligent television. Unfortunately, we are no longer allowed to make good TV. The Americans have decreed that that shall not be the role of British television. Which is why American drama appears to be the best...because our governments since Thatcher has sold out to the American media corporations, and has stopped properly funding our TV networks, so we can no longer compete with the Yank market.
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