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PD James: The Adam Dalgliesh Chronicles [DVD]

Roy Marsden , Penny Downie , Ross Devenish , Andrew Grieve    Suitable for 15 years and over   DVD
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (26 customer reviews)
Price: 39.75 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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PD James: The Adam Dalgliesh Chronicles [DVD] + P.D. James - Death in Holy Orders & The Murder Room [DVD]
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Product details

  • Actors: Roy Marsden, Penny Downie, Ian Bannen, Mairead Carty, Simon Chandler
  • Directors: Ross Devenish, Andrew Grieve, Gareth Davies, John Davies, Ronald Wilson
  • Format: PAL
  • 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: 16
  • Classification: 15
  • Studio: Network
  • DVD Release Date: 28 Sep 2009
  • Run Time: 2300 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (26 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B002R1JD0S
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 12,165 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)


Product Description

All ten cases of PD James' Adam Dalgliesh Chronicles starring Roy Marsden in the title role collected and uncut. Dalgliesh, who holds the high position of Commander in the Metropolitan Police Service at New Scotland Yard in London, is an intensely cerebral and private person. He writes poetry, a fact which his colleagues are fond of reminding him. Several volumes of his poetry have been published. Dalgliesh lives in a flat above the Thames at Queenhithe in the City of London and drives a Jaguar. He's singular and even perhaps quirky in his methodology but seldom does he fail to get his man - a modern day Sherlock Holmes, one might say. The first ten of PD James' thirteen novels about the atypical detective were adapted for TV miniseries' by Anglia TV with Marsden as Dalgliesh; 'Cover Her Face' (1985), 'A Mind To Murder'(1995), 'Unnatural Causes' (1993), 'Shroud For A Nightingale' (1984), 'The Black Tower' (1985), 'A Certain Justice' (1998), 'Death of an Expert Witness' (1983), 'A Taste For Death' (1988), 'Devices and Desires' (1991), and 'Original Sin' (1997)

Product Description

United Kingdom released, PAL/Region 2 DVD: LANGUAGES: English ( Dolby Digital Stereo ), English ( Mono ), SPECIAL FEATURES: Booklet, Box Set, Cast/Crew Interview(s), Interactive Menu, Multi-DVD Set, Scene Access, Uncut, SYNOPSIS: This set includes ten acclaimed screen adaptations based on the novels of award-winning British author P.D. James. Titled PD James: Adam Dalgliesh Chronicles, this 16-disc set contains forty-four episodes of classic TV from the mind of one of the UK's most successful and celebrated crime fiction writers, who has won nine awards for her work and been nominated for many further accolades.

Death of an Expert Witness (1983): Dalgliesh leads the hunt for an elusive strangler in the Norfolk Fens in this seven-part drama.

Shroud for a Nightingale (1984): Dalgliesh becomes entangled in a deadly murder hunt inside a training home for nurses in this five-part adaptation.

Cover Her Face (1985): Dalgliesh follows a young girl and a trail of death to a beautiful country home in this six-part show.

The Black Tower (1985): A reckless move in the drugs trade turns into a dice with death for Dalgliesh in this six-part drama.

A Taste for Death (1988): Dalgliesh sets up the Sensitive Crimes Squad and faces an immediate challenge.

Devices and Desires (1991): Holidaying in Norfolk, Dalgliesh is caught up in a series of murders when he discovers a body in this six-part show.

Unnatural Causes (1993): Dalgliesh is drawn into a macabre murder case during his investigations into a currency scam in this feature-length drama.

A Mind to Murder (1995): Dalgliesh is called in following the grote...The Adam Dalgliesh Chronicles P.D. James - Complete Series - 16-DVD Box Set ( Death of an Expert Witness / Shroud for a Nightingale / Cover Her Face / The Black Tower / A Taste for Death / Devices and Desires / Unnatural Causes / A Mind to

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
41 of 41 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Like any fine vintage, it improves with age. 12 July 2010
By R. Ayre
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
This is a superb collection that will keep viewer busy for a long time and Roy Marsden put in a brilliant performance in every single one of his scenes. The slower moving early episodes are epics in the way that no other detective series ever was (in point of fact, these were never 'series' in the traditional sense).

My favourite story was the very first, Death of an Expert Witness, on the grounds of the atmosphere it created; that really set the scene for what followed and was always going to be a hard act to follow. However justice was done in the form of the delightfully creepy Shroud for a Nightingale which was probably the best of the lot (not my favourite, but I felt it was actually the best - and there is a difference between the two). Whichever you prefer, both grip the viewer from beginning to end and I be surprised if one or the other doesn't make it to the top of the list for most people who buy this set.

Personally I found that the two subsequent stories, Cover Her Face and The Black Tower, took much too long to get off the ground. However, they are certainly worth persevering as they pick up with pace mid-way through and buy the final episodes build up into very tense finales.

Without giving the game away, A Taste For Death built upon the end of The Black tower in so much as this is where significantly more physical action was infused into the Adam Dalgliesh Chronicles; it was certainly an interesting turning point, if perhaps neither were my favourite examples.

As we move onto Devices and Desires things are back up to standard; other critics have slated this particular dramatisation but I found it recreated some of the earlier atmosphere.
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50 of 51 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb Dalgliesh!! 5 April 2010
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
Roy Marsden's understated wonderful performance as Adam Dalgleish is breaktaking. Without hardly saying a word he conveyed the nature of this highly complex man. You felt that he was powerful, yet there was an underlying gentleness and kindness to the character. You could believe that he had an inner depth and was a sensitive soul who wrote and appreciated poetry.

I have thoroughly enjoyed revisiting this series which was first broadcast in 1984. Shroud for a Nightingale is superb. I have more to watch and know that once I have finished this box set I shall revisit time and time again.

An excellent value for money set for anyone who enjoys nostalgia and a slower pace of policing.

Highly recommend this to others.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful collection of classic stories 14 Sep 2011
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
I've long been an admirer of Roy Marsden's portrayal of Adam Dalgliesh, and PD James' stories, so the opportunity to own them in one very well priced box set was too good to miss. The lack of extras doesnt bother me; the dramas themselves are the real material, and the quality of picture and sound is fine, especially given the age of the first couple of programs. One thing that I do think could have been done better was the handling of the ad-breaks. These programs were on ITV, and so every so often the break music and program title overlays a few seconds of the program at the beginning of what would have been the ad break. This is followed by the music and scene for the restart after the break. Since these overlaid a few seconds of scene from the drama I can understand why they couldnt have been just cut - the transition would have been obvious. But instead there are several seconds where nothing is happening except a still screen with the program title; I think a little more effort could have been made to fade out and back in more seamlessly to make the absent ad break less obvious. Nit picking though, it doesnt really detract from the enjoyment of the drama. Very happy with these.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Adam Dalgleish Chronicles [DVD] 21 Feb 2011
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
Having checked price before ordering, I then ordered and delivery was within a few days. The quality of the DVDs is excellent and the cover notes were very helpful and I am well pleased with the purchase.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Adam Dalgliesh Chronicles 14 May 2013
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
I had seen a few AD films on TV over the years and, like most of the murder mystery genre, Poirot, Marple (earlier), Foyle's War, Lewis (later), thoroughly enjoyed them. I discovered the novels about two years ago when I was given a present of 'Cover Her Face': coincidentally the first AD novel. I was hooked, taken by the depth of PD James' writing, compared to the 'lighter' Agatha Christie novels, which had until then been my usual fare. I am now on my seventh novel (not reading in order).
When I saw this set advertised, I hesitated at first at the price but - 39 hours' worth - there would be many weeks' viewing here, so I treated myself. We are currently watching the films after I have read the book, currently on the fifth (Expert Witness)
Firstly, a few general comments. I find the departures from the books mildly irritating - Cover Her Face: a Cypriot drug cartel!; Mind to Murder: a totally different setting; Expert Witness: a pregnant wife for AD! (My own fault for reading the books first.) Secondly, the films tend to be slow moving and some are over long, at least six are over four hours. They are a relic of their time and, if made today (who would play AD!!??) would probably be 90-100 minutes long.
However, for a fan of AD, this collection is a must. Roy Marsden plays AD perfectly, just as PDJ created him: authoritative, compassionate, melancholy, private (sad and lonely even).
Comments on the ones I have watched:
Cover Her Face: A good story (notwithstanding the above comment), but over long, given that this was one of the shorter stories.
Mind To Murder: To date, the weakest film and the weakest book. (Perhaps if I had read this first, I may not have sought out the others.)
Black Tower: Enjoyable but perhaps a bit too predictable.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Loved it
Marsden is the quintessential Dalgleish. Excellent supporting cast and direction. Well chosen film locations.
All in all a high quality presentation of the work of the author.
Published 19 days ago by David Pugh
5.0 out of 5 stars Good crime series
I would thoroughly recommend this DVD by one of the best crime writers. Good stories that keep you gripped. Would highly recommend.
Published 1 month ago by Dinah H
5.0 out of 5 stars PD James: The Adam Dalgliesh Chronicles (DVD)
I really enjoyed Roy Marsden's take on Adam Dalgliesh. and the PD James stories. I liked the fact that they kept as much to the books as possible.
Published 1 month ago by Irene
5.0 out of 5 stars adam dalgliesh
it brought back memories of when I first watched Dalgliesh on tv and was as good as I remembered it
Published 1 month ago by E. C. Wilkins
5.0 out of 5 stars enjoyable DVD
I enjoyed this DVD very much.
I would recommend this to everyone.
The Adam Dalgliesh Chronicles are a good mystery.
Published 2 months ago by Roslyn Sharp
5.0 out of 5 stars Acting, pacing and settings all highly satisfactory
Roy Marsden actually manages to bring Dalgliesh to life, adding a touch of human warmth to the integrity, dignity and stoicism that leave one rather cold. Read more
Published 2 months ago by S. Graham David
4.0 out of 5 stars Roy Marsden IS Adam Dalgliesh
Martin Shaw gave it a good go (and in fairness the BBC productions weren't bad at all) but Roy Marsden is the definitive article.

I am 35 years of age. Read more
Published 3 months ago by The Raven
5.0 out of 5 stars Perfect
I have long been a follower of Adam Dalglies. I have read all the books and the CDs are a perfect reflection of them. Highly recommended.
Published 3 months ago by Trevor W. Edmonds
4.0 out of 5 stars Marsden at his best
great mysteries uniquely solved by Adam Dalgleish . Well written for an actor with such talent to solve the plots written for him
Published 4 months ago by meerkat145
3.0 out of 5 stars Personal reasons for this rating
I preferred Martin Shaw as Adam Dalgliesh. This does not have the same dignity, spiritual awareness, nor academic ability to analyze the evidence that is uncovered. Read more
Published 7 months ago by W. Elder
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