Customer Reviews


53 Reviews
5 star:
 (42)
4 star:
 (8)
3 star:
 (1)
2 star:
 (1)
1 star:
 (1)
 
 
 
 
 
Average Customer Review
Share your thoughts with other customers
Create your own review
 
 

The most helpful favourable review
The most helpful critical review


55 of 58 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A tragic love story
A servant girl, herself fallen on hard times, befriends the aged Casanova, now a reclusive librarian in a rich man's household, eking out his days in obscurity, left only with his memories and could-have-beens.
Peter O'Toole plays the aged lothario, David Tennant the rake in his youth. As the action flashes backwards and forwards through time, we discover a...
Published on 3 Aug 2005 by Budge Burgess

versus
2.0 out of 5 stars a good romp but...
This is a good romp but I have been reading the actual diaries of Casanova and this series is absurdly far away from what he actually writes. It is a pity. It would be interesting to see an accurate series of even a part of his remarkable story.
Published 2 months ago by Bart


‹ Previous | 1 26 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

55 of 58 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A tragic love story, 3 Aug 2005
By 
Budge Burgess (Troon, Scotland) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Casanova [2005] [DVD] (DVD)
A servant girl, herself fallen on hard times, befriends the aged Casanova, now a reclusive librarian in a rich man's household, eking out his days in obscurity, left only with his memories and could-have-beens.
Peter O'Toole plays the aged lothario, David Tennant the rake in his youth. As the action flashes backwards and forwards through time, we discover a different image of Casanova - not a man who systematically seduced and used women, but an educated, talented, not to mention inspired individual who loved women and was loved by them. He is a man fated to love, to be loved, to be fêted and hated, but never quite to find his true love.
His mother is portrayed as an actress who abandoned him in pursuit of her own promiscuous hedonism. The boy is emotionally silenced, but he has a multitude of talents and limitless determination ... not to mention a bit of luck. We follow Casanova as he charms his way into Venetian society ... only to be cast into prison, escape, and pursue a trail of adventures across the courts of Europe.
It's a helter-skelter costume drama which eschews rigid adherence to historical accuracy, injecting elements of a more modern world into its style and portrayal until it becomes a self-parody. Humorous, touching, captivating, with wonderful performances from a very talented ensemble of actors, "Casanova" gives us a fresh, tender portrayal of the character and his times. There is lustiness but no nudity, desire without exploitation, and a cavalcade of astonishing images and impressions of a society on the verge of revolution and cataclysmic change.
And there is a sting in the tail (or tale), as Casanova's own son becomes a monstrous caricature of the father, corrupting his philosophy ... or being corrupted by it. You are left wondering about the real man - did he really love women, was he really a great communicator, or did he cynically manipulate both them and their male dominated societies?
It's a wonderfully entertaining show. Audacious, controversial, Tennant the cheeky chappy, O'Toole more reflective and disillusioned, tempted to rewrite his history, or to exorcise it from record by consigning it to the flames. Ultimately, this is a tragic love story rather than hedonistic romp, tragic yet intensely human. Well worth watching.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


49 of 52 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Winning Combination, 26 Sep 2006
This review is from: Casanova [2005] [DVD] (DVD)
I enviously watched the trailers for Casanova when I didn't have access to BBC3 - I thought it looked like an exciting, colourful romp. I waited everso patiently until it was repeated on BBC1 and was not disappointed in the least.

Peter O'Toole is brilliantly cast as the older Casanova, remembering his past and all the women he had ever loved. His portrayal was poignant and sometimes a little scary, but as his quest for Henriette comes to a close you really do feel sorry for the man with so much potential having become a fairly lowly Librarian and object of ridicule.

Laura Fraser is stunning as Henriette - the kind of enigmatic and beautiful woman we all strive unsuccessfully to be! Rose Byrne is the picture of innocence and amused shock at the older man's tales. Both women play their parts beautifully.

Russell T Davies' writing was already known to me to be something special, my particular favourite being 'Queer As Folk'. Again, he manages to give us a lively tale with great one-liners, action, punches and sex - lots of it. The way he explores Jack's fears over falling in love with Bellino is brilliantly done and he doesn't shy away from controversial topics (In fact, such topics are becoming more mainstream and less hidden thanks mainly to people like him).

And finally ... how could I review this without mentioning David Tennant? I can't. That man is such a talented actor, he makes every part his. He is quirky, cheeky and devillishly charming. A previous review said that RTD wanted to steer away from someone conventionally handsome for the part - maybe David Tennant isn't conventionally handsome, but I certainly wouldn't kick him out of bed!

This is a must for any fan of Russell T Davies or David Tennant; they are a winning combination as Doctor Who's tenth incarnation only proves.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


59 of 64 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Yet another lover of Casanova emerges, 15 April 2005
By 
russell clarke "stipesdoppleganger" (halifax, west yorks) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)    (VINE VOICE)   
This review is from: Casanova [2005] [DVD] (DVD)
Rushed into the shops after its recent screening on B.B.C. Four and One this version written by Russell T Davies sees the classic tale of a charming philanderer brought bang up to date with copious amounts of contemporary wit and energy. It's filmed with vertiginous glee, in fact, at the risk of being arrested by the pun police I'd say it goes like the clappers.
The old Casanova , played with salacious zeal by Peter O Toole, relates his life story to an enraptured Servant who gradually teases out of him the fact his tale of numerous conquests isn't merely a saga of unmitigated lust (Though it's undoubtedly that as well) but has moments of genuine affection and yes god dam it ..Love. Casanova in his pomp is portrayed excellently by David Tennant as a witty charming chancer with the gift of the gab and a smile to make women melt. Events don't always follow the course he intends and though he raises to the very top of Venetian Society, meeting the love of his life, Henriette, along the way and nearly succeeds in wooing her till her wealthy Fiancé sees to it that disgrace follows and so he has to flee and head for pastures new including Paris and London.
Any cast that features the luscious Dervla Kirwan and the excellent Nina Sosanya has a lot going for it but throw in superb cameos from Matt Lucas , Freddie Jones Simon Day and an enrapturing performance from Laura Fraser as Henriette and it would be hard pressed to make this less than watchable . But with stylistic flourishes in the filming , which may annoy fans of more traditional costume dramas , and the decidedly modern vernacular of the script this is costume drama for the 21st Century and to this viewer it's all the better for it. The one surprise is the lack of sex, or rather the lack of graphic sex which is something you would expect from a modern drama but this is a tale told with a twinkle in its bawdy eye so the less than serious, almost saucy postcard approach should really come as no surprise.
Normally I'd rather gargle with brick cleaner than watch some stilted period drama but this was almost a revelation, pacy, funny, colourful and fiendishly entertaining. With this and the return of the excellent new Doctor Who, suddenly T.V. is watchable again.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


25 of 27 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic, 6 Feb 2007
By 
This review is from: Casanova [2005] [DVD] (DVD)
Finally! A period drama that isn't swamped with earnest-looking actors in ruffs or boring to anyone who doesn't know the original text off by heart. Casanova shines with colour and comedy, while the drama left me counting down the days until the next weekly installment.

An aging Casanova, meticulously portrayed by Peter O'Toole, tells a young serving girl about his bawdy exploits from his youth. All this seems a bit superfluous, though, to the mighty David Tennant and the dashing, handsome Casanova who took the 17th Century by storm. Tennant steals the whole mini-series; being completely gorgeous didn't hurt, either. The story itself is quite sad, as Casanova never did get the girl, but any melancholy is soon drowned in the costumes and liveliness of the script.

The only (pathetically minor) quibble about it is that they kept the ad breaks in, repeating bits of the episode you've just seen before starting on the next one, which is a bit annoying when you continue from half-way through an episode and know what's just happened. Quibbling aside, this is a fantastic program and definately worth buying - just don't take it as historic fact.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


25 of 27 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Russell T. Davies has nothing to declare but his genius, 30 Dec 2005
By A Customer
This review is from: Casanova [2005] [DVD] (DVD)
Casanova is a sparkling, bawdy, comic, heartbreaking romp of a period drama that puts most of the bewigged and powdered TV offerings to shame. The plot rattles along at a breakneck pace, much like Casanova himself as he escapes from boudoirs and prisons alike, and we follow Casanova's journey from young buck to ... old buck, albeit one who hankers for his true love and not simply womankind in general.
I had wondered how the licentious and not necessarily likeable 'real' Casanova would transfer to screen. While RTD takes a few historical shortcuts, and fleshes out the character to render him more palatable, these all contribute immensely to the plot (Casanova himself would relish the reinvention). Casting David Tennant is a masterstroke - I read in an interview that RTD had consciously chosen to avoid the conventionally handsome leading man types, in order to emphasise that Casanova attracted women by means of his personality rather than purely his looks. DT is perfect - sexy, funny, and full of energy.
The supporting cast are also typically fabulous - I think it's impossible to watch Casanova and not fall for Henriette too (Laura Fraser has a smile to die for). The role of Bellino must have been an actor's dream as the character constantly evolves and Nina Sosanya captures every aspect - from young aspirant singer to a dissolute, attention-seeking libertine. The score is also beautiful - the best soundtrack I have heard for a long time - I'd go so far as to say that this boxset is worth buying for that experience alone.
All in all, I can't recommend this series enough. Thank you Russell!
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


24 of 26 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Incredible, 23 April 2005
This review is from: Casanova [2005] [DVD] (DVD)
This is a fantastic new take on the old story; fast paced, witty and entirely engaging. The tale is told by "old" Casanova (baudily played by Peter O'Toole) with extended flashbacks to the antics of his younger self (David Tennant). Tennant is utterly convincingly as the cheeky young lover (with the exception of a few suspect wigs) and the excellently choreographed dance sequences are mesmerising. Even friends who are not normally interested in anything that does not contain phasers and transportation devices thoroughly enjoyed this fantastic drama.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars wow, 16 Jun 2007
This review is from: Casanova [2005] [DVD] (DVD)
This is an absolutely awesome series. The wonderful Peter O'Toole plays the old Casanova, the sparkle still in his eyes as he tells a young maid the story of his youth, and David Tennant stars as the promiscuous but basically good young Casanova. This is a story that covers two beautifully told love stories, the French Revolution, the National Lottery, the fall of Venice, and, of course, lots of sex. And apart from being an excellent drama and very funny, it's got David Tennant in!
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Very Entertaining, 1 Sep 2006
By 
Migratory (United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Casanova [2005] [DVD] (DVD)
This version of Casanova's story is a very entertaining one. Told in three installments, it features an elderly Casanova (O'Toole) telling parts of his life story to a young serving girl.

David Tennant plays the young Casanova, and he's marvellous - his chirpy attractiveness is perfect for the role. The first installment of the tale is the lightest, and I think the best. Casanova's entrance into Venetian society and his ascencion through their ranks are shown with wit and a fast pace.

At the heart of the story is the genuine love Casanova has for Henriette (Laura Fraser), who he meets very shortly after his arrival in Venice only to find that she is taken.

Of course, this being the story of Casanova, there are plenty of encounters with more available (or not) lovers. We begin with Casanova being chased through Venice by an irate husband, which pretty much sets the tone of the first installment.

As the story develops it becomes darker as Casanova's fortunes change and he begins to examine his own behaviour. In the meantime, the elderly Casanova - who has been narrating the tale - reveals more of his character. The scenes with the older Casanova have a much slower pace, but they ultimately anchor the story quite well - as we are aware of where his wandering will eventually lead him - and although I enjoyed them less than the rest of the tale they were still well done.

I didn't know much about the genuine history of Casanova so I can't analyse the content, but - as other reviewers have mentioned - historical accuracy isn't the strength of this series. It's entertainment, and it's marvellous. Music, wit, love, sex, the beautiful colours of Venice and the marvellous collection of characters make this a wonderful dvd. There aren't any extras on my version, but who needs them? It's worth buying for the content.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars awesome!, 25 Aug 2005
By A Customer
This review is from: Casanova [2005] [DVD] (DVD)
As i missed out on the original televised airings, i couldnt wait to watch it , and it was definitely worth the wait! i laughed, i smiled, and even cried!! it was brillianty wriiten,incredibly funny, and very well acted. The "play all" option is brilliant, allowing the watcher to watch all 3 episodes back to back! definitely a brilliant dvd!
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars fantastic programme, pity about the DVD authoring.., 5 April 2011
By 
This review is from: Casanova [2005] [DVD] (DVD)
There's nothing I can say about this fantastic mini-series that hasn't already been said and I'd give it a full five stars if it wasn't for the atrocious quality of the DVD itself. Am amazed that no one else seems to have commented on it but the compression/encoding of the audio is dreadfully raspy and renders all the amazing music by Murray Gold sounding like a badly encoded MP3 from the early days of the internet. Appalling work.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


‹ Previous | 1 26 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

This product

Casanova [2005] [DVD]
Casanova [2005] [DVD] by Peter O'Toole (DVD - 2005)
£11.84
In stock
Add to basket Add to wishlist
Only search this product's reviews