I have read all the pervious amazon reviews about BBC's S&S miniseries, but they were mixed, so I did not know what to expect from the production as a whole. However, I was most pleasantly surprised, for I found it lovely.
There's no denying it that compared to the outstanding Emma Thompson movie the miniseries seems much more sedate and restrained -with less passion grande and display of tormented feelings-, it's like a theatre play really, but somehow it did not diminish it in my eyes. Given the length it was more leisurely, more faithful to the plot of the book.
I found the cast excellent: Irene Richard as Elinor and Tracey Childs as Marianne played their parts excellently. Diana Fairfax was a warm-hearted and ladylike Mrs Dashwood, Amanda Boxer was an excellent Fanny Dashwood: so cold-hearted, sneering and mean-spirited that you just wanted to slap her in the face really hard whenever she appeared on scene. Peter Gayle as John Dashwood also acted his part as the mean but jovial husband totally under his wife's influence. Peter Woodward (Willoughby) was dashing, Bosco Hogan (Edward) and Robert Swann (colonel Brandon) as the sisters suitors I found endearing. The Steele sisters were vulgar and shrewd, Mrs Jennings was vulgar, but kind-hearted. Characterization was superb through and through.
There were reviewers who found Irene R's Elinor too cold, but I did not have that feeling - it was rather that the scenes focusing on her feelings were just too short, we were not given the chance to see her suffer.
There is one thing however that disturbed me very much - the very sudden and abrupt ending. I couldn't help feeling cheated of the happy ending. Before I could start to enjoy the fact that all will turn out well, cut ... and over. This is why I don't give it 5 stars.
If you take my advice, try and enjoy this production for its own merits without comparing it to the movie - because they are two different worlds.