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Turn of the Screw [DVD]

Michelle Dockery , Eva Sayer , Tim Fywell    Suitable for 15 years and over   DVD
3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (19 customer reviews)
Price: £9.80 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over £10. Details
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Turn of the Screw [DVD] + The Innocents [1961] [DVD]
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Product details

  • Actors: Michelle Dockery, Eva Sayer, Josef Lindsay, Dan Stevens, Mark Umbers
  • Directors: Tim Fywell
  • Producers: Colin Wratten
  • Format: PAL
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: 15
  • Studio: Acorn Media
  • DVD Release Date: 1 Mar 2010
  • Run Time: 88 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (19 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B002GP7Q3G
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 11,375 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)


A young woman held imprisoned in an insane asylum refuses to tell her tale, until one man finds the key that will unlock her dark secrets. Hired as a governess to two young children, Miles and Flora, she found herself entrapped in a terrible mystery. What happened to her predecessor? What secrets do the children carry with them? Why was young Miles expelled from school? Who was Peter Quint and why does his spirit fill the house with fear? In a haunting tale of sexual predators, suspense and murder, the ghosts are relentless in pursuit of those who believe in them, cursing those who do not. And fear awaits with every Turn of the Screw.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
Admittedly, I have not read the original by Henry James, but I was hooked by this BBC adaptation. The story is about a young governess who goes to a house full of women to look after two children, Miles and Flora. Although her new position seems welcoming enough, she soon suspects that there is a history to the house. A history which involves the children in some way...

What I loved about this adaptation is that the answers were not clearly there for the audience. Was the governess mad or was she indeed involved in a haunting? I think you could watch this and easily make a good argument for both. The acting, of course, goes a long way in creating this ambiguity. All performances are excellent, both the children and the adults.

I don't want to say much more than that, I would rather people discover this for themselves. Highly recommended. My only regret - not reading the original beforehand perhaps. Although off the back of this, I shall definitely be checking that out too.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars CHILLING! 28 July 2011
THE TURN OF THE SCREW is a chilling ghost story that will haunt you long after it has finished! The acting was superb, classical! The two children played their parts wonderfully! Some of the storyline got a bit lost in ridiculous excuses for strange happenings, but apart from that this chilling horror was almost perfect! If you want good acting and a truly haunting setting, then this is definately for you! A fantastic chiller! 8/10!
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22 of 24 people found the following review helpful
This is a brave, ambitious attempt to update 'Turn of the Screw' in order to appeal to a modern audience, and though it is unfortunately undone by the occasional poorly written and cliched lines at critical moments, (where they should have trusted the lasting value of James's writing), and an inability to employ the Jamesian subtlety that is so crucial to the story's great ambiguity, it was always going to be a challenging novel to recreate.

There are many areas where it impresses: It largely overcomes the numerous obstacles of translating the book into a film, which is particularly difficult with this novel due to the large focus on the governess's thoughts and consciousness which in a film possibly could become frustrating and monotonous. The film thus brings in other characters to communicate the governess's thoughts through more lively dialogue. The film's depiction of Quint as a lecherous womaniser is an interesting and effective embellishment to James's character, even if it comes at the cost of much of the mystery that surrounds him in the novel. So too by presenting Miss Jessel as a real woman who solicitated Quint's advancements, the film expands her role to mirror the sexual desires we perceive in the governess.

The casting of these character is excellent, and the casting of the children even more so, as they perfectly match the characters presented in the novel, though Miles provides a more obstinate character, without the subtle cunning of his depiction in the novel. Unfortunately, though I feel the film ruins these characters by giving them the profanities of Jessel and Quint's to speak aloud.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Chilling 30 Dec 2009
Lets face it, there have been many adaptations of Henry James' classic novella over the years, each having their own merits. When I first heard that the BBC had a new adaptation to be broadcast set in post World War 1 Britain my first thought was, Sarah Waters' 'The Little Stranger' has sold its film rights and so the Beeb can't produce it. But after watching this I now think differently.

If you were to think that this was a by the numbers adaptation just set in a more modern period, you would be wrong. There are some alterations to the original story, but that doesn't detract from the tale, but adds a new development. 'The Turn of the Screw' is one of my favourite all time works, and so I am always a bit dubious when watching a screen version of it, especially as I have read the book so many times over the years. Depending what mood I am in I either read it as a straight forward supernatural tale, or as a psychological thriller with a deranged governess. Sandy Welch has here obviously taken some time over this and has incorporated both approaches into this version, giving it that fresh uneasiness that you have when you first read the story. Purists may be put off by this, especially as there are some scenes of a mild sexual nature; but these add to the thing as a whole.

Beautifully filmed, with some unusual camera shots, and wonderfully acted throughout - especially by the chid actors, there are some twists here, like the governess being in an asylum, and you are left with doubts of whether she is mad, or whether indeed there are supernatural forces at work. All in all this a good drama to watch that will definitely get under your skin.
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19 of 23 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars A bludgeoning approach to James' novella 3 Jan 2010
Having seen "The Innocents", the 1961 adaptation of Henry James' "The Turn of the Screw", I couldn't watch this without comparing the two, and this modern interpretation does not come off well in the comparison, in my view. The most glaring problem of this adaptation is its complete inability to appreciate that subtlety and ambiguity are central to the enduring power of James' original novella. This is apparent from the very beginning of the film: thus, as soon as the governess arrives, she is met with hostility from the staff of Bly, for no reason, and it is within minutes of her arrival that the whispering and unexplained noises start. Flora first appears dressed in white, gliding silently into view and staring at the governess from behind without announcing her presence, thus immediately making her a figure of sinister import in a far too explicit manner.

At the same time, though, the governess' mental state is brought into question far earlier and in a far more obvious manner than the original. She is clearly besotted with her employer, and hallucinates his presence on one occasion early in the film. The makers seem worried that viewers will not get the implications of James' story, and make everything explicit, making the story seem muddled rather than ambiguous.

Worst of all, though, in my view, is the interspersion of scenes of the governess with a psychiatrist after her experiences at Bly, where psychology of the most cod variety is applied to suck the life out of the story. She hated her father, we are told, and such, in an attempt to wrap her character up in a neat package, and reducing her to a type, rather than an individual. The facile explanations are at odds with James' approach, and represent a considerable dumbing-down of the material.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars but I enjoyed it. Well done
It's scary, but I enjoyed it. Well done, the suspense is perfectly manage. Definitely I loved Dan Stevens and Michelle Dockery perfomances as much as I've enjoyed them in Downton... Read more
Published 15 days ago by S. N. Hidalgo Valdez
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Lovely film with Michelle Dockerty well acted.
Published 1 month ago by elizabeth crowe
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Published 3 months ago by Mopsy
3.0 out of 5 stars Turn of the Screw DVD
A bit scary. A rather sad ending for a governess that tried her best to care for the children. What an evil man that gamekeeper was.
Published 12 months ago by Judith Williams
5.0 out of 5 stars Scary
The two children were very scary and it was interesting to see a pre Downton Michelle Dockery and Dan Stevens.
Published 13 months ago by POS
5.0 out of 5 stars story
very gripping story but found it difficult to separate the lead role actors
from past story adapted for television eg Downton Abbey
Published 19 months ago by Marion Stark
4.0 out of 5 stars Turn of the Screw
What genius that MR James was! I have read the story over and over again, I have seen different versions of the film, among them this one with some very well-known faces. Read more
Published 20 months ago by Sally T
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic
This BBC adaptation was excellent as it featured not only the basic plot line but told the story through a different light
Published 21 months ago by Karimah
4.0 out of 5 stars A classic with some tinkering
(This review is for The Turn of the Screw, not Above Suspicion, which has been incorrectly linked in the product reviews)

This classic and subtle ghost story by Henry... Read more
Published 23 months ago by downkiddie
3.0 out of 5 stars Not as good as I was expecting...
The story is good but the adaptation is poor. I bought it after having watched The Woman in Black in the cinema and was expecting something similar. Not in a million years.
Published on 8 April 2012 by Ana Sofia Brito
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