28 of 29 people found the following review helpful
on 21 February 2008
This touching story is excellent family viewing and whilst I agree with another reviewer that it IS all too short,do not let this distract you from watching.
Martin Clunes is superb as the master who devotes his life to the education and pastoral concern of his charges.I had not realised quite what a versatile actor he was before viewing this but his performance in this touching drama deserved to be recognised.
It is a beautiful story, retold in a sensitive way and as we move through the decades Chips and his boys become involved in the Great War~it is brought home to us exactly what this war cost us in terms of life and sacrifice.
There are a couple of corporal punishment scenes that may make you wince a little but it is a fact of life that this was how school functioned then.
Please buy and watch this story~you will not regret it.Highly recommended.
40 of 42 people found the following review helpful
on 17 November 2003
If you've seen the 1939 original, you might hesitate on seeing the men behaving badly actor in the lead role. This role merely highlights Clunes' ability as a truly stunning and versatile actor, he gives an inspired performance in this remake and plays "Chips" beautifully. The story is of a man who joins an all boys school and watches them grow generation by generation, he falls in love, suffers personal tragedy and learns a great deal from the boys and the other masters. It's told differently from the original, this version highlighting more of the bullying mentality of these institutions. This story has one of best endings I have ever seen, of course I can't say what it is but if you're not in tears by then, you need to see a doctor!
19 of 20 people found the following review helpful
on 23 December 2009
As a lifelong fan of the excellent original Donat/Garson version, I groaned when hearing that Clunes was to play the eponymous Latin master. Who could picture that oaf playing such a subtle role, I bellowed. Reluctantly, I gave him a chance, and he totally caught me broadside by excelling in this utterly charming and subtle production. In fact - and it tortures me to even whisper it - it is a superior version in many ways. Gone are the artificial studio-hosted environs to be replaced by authentic location shots (admittedly, these were part of the original's appeal, but the fresher realism is a very welcome thing), gone are some of the stereotypical and stagey characters, enter some highly moving though brief scenes pertaining to the darker side of the human psyche (bullying, war etc). It is excellently directed with a very unaffected air and in addition to Clunes, Victoria Hamilton steps superbly into the "Duchess's" shoes as Kathy, John Wood gives an (as ever) effortless performance as the gruff Headmaster. I am almost surprised that this is not a BBC production, such is its quality and subtlety. However, I would agree with others that its brevity is its only weak point, with the relationship between Staefel and Chips being slightly underdone (although I guess Paul Henreid's appearance was brief in the original too). All in all a very credible and touching drama that could have been horribly saccharin in the hands of others but which is regally portrayed in this. I cannot recommend it highly enough.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on 8 October 2008
This version of Goodbye Mr Chips is in my opinion a superb production and by far the best version yet made. The story is familiar, a strict disciplinarian schoolmaster who mellows with age and wins the love and respect of everyone around him.
Martin Clunes was an inspired choice for the part of Mr Chipping, and his powerful performance was the most touching thing I have ever seen.... ever! I defy anyone with half a heart to watch this film and remain unmoved by it.
Martin Clunes played Chips from a young twenty-something, through to a caring and much beloved headmaster in his late eighties, and not only is his performance thoroughly believable, the make-up department also did a bang-up job in making him look totally genuine as an old man.
Also starring Victoria Hamilton as Chips' young wife Kathie, this is a beautiful film, and not to be missed...but keep your hankies handy!
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on 10 July 2009
This is one of the most fantastic adaptations I have ever seen. The book is wonderful and this drama reaches the standard of the book. I have watched this so many times and still can't get enough!
Martin Clunes is a wonderful actor and it seems as though this part was made for him. It is a truely great film and everyone should buy it, for the price you can't go wrong!
Touching, moving, funny and lovely! Buy it!!!
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on 26 June 2014
I love the original film starring Robert Donat, and saw this remake on TV some time ago and as a fan of Martin Clunes decided to buy it. The story is pretty much the same, set at Brookfield school for boys about a young teacher who comes to the school in 1870 and stays for over 50 years. There are a few changes to the original, slightly more modern, but Martin does an excellent and convincing job in the starring role. Highly recommended.
8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
It is always a great risk when someone tries to remake a classic movie,especially for television. I have to say that this version of 'Goodbye Mr Chips' is a delight from start to finish and,in my opinion,on a par with the 1939 version starring Robert Donat and Greer Garson.
Martin Clunes is a revelation as Chipping and will surprise many people with just how outstanding he is in the role.He is vulnerable,pompous,sensitive and compassionate and he captures every emotion perfectly. He really is that good. All the performances are good in truth with Victoria Hamilton,Conleth Hill and Patrick Malahide all excelling in their roles. To be honest,I can't think of one dud performance in this excellent drama. There is a very good sense of period and the music is quietly impressive without being too overpowering.
This is an example of how good British television can be and one small complaint I have is that it could possibly have been a bit longer. That is a minor niggle though and this inspiring,sad and heartfelt drama fully deserves five stars. If you have any doubts that an actor from 'Men Behaving Badly' can pull off a role like Mr Chips then be prepared for Martin Clunes to amaze you with the realism he brings to the part.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 20 August 2010
I'd recommend this classic to anyone, young or old. It keeps the spirit of what times were like during the age before and after the world wars at a high classed school for boys. The comprimises the headmasters had to make to change the way things used to be done. The story follows a lone teacher (Mr. Chipping) fresh and green, wanting to be given another chance at a positon of responibilty. He starts his life with no authority over the pupils but finds throuhgout his life and generations of teaching, the pupils find a new found respect for now (Mr. Chips). Teacher of humour and humility. There are other parts to the movie also, family, Marriage, Death, you''ll have to find out. 8.5/10
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 6 January 2012
As the title says this is one of my all time favourite films. For those who don't know what it is about, Martin Clunes plays a Latin Teacher. At first he has a difficult time fitting in to the schools environment and respect from students. He stays at the school for many years, he makes friends and gains the respect from students without the typical use of discipline of the time. There are certain events that happen to him inbetween, meeting and marrying his wife, losing his wife and WWI etc. He becomes so much part of the school that they make him the headmaster of the school.
Well hopefully I haven't given the WHOLE story away and only given you a brief(ish) outline, but it is a wonderful victorian(ish) style story and is very much worth the watch if you like period films or films like Goodnight Mr Toms.
Would whole heartedly recommend.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 7 January 2012
I enjoyed this film, however it did not quite measure up to the original with Robert Donat. Martin Clunes did quite a good job in capturing the lonely master, however the film was missing the poignancy of the original, especially in respect to the incidents with a number of boys over the years attending the school.