3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Intriguing screenplay - Sting CAN act!!,
This review is from: Brimstone And Treacle [DVD] (DVD)
Note: My copy of 'Brimstone and Treacle' is on the Prism Leisure label (you can see the copy I have via the 'customer image' feature on this page). I can't speak for any other releases of this film, but the quality of my copy is perfectly satisfactory for me, but it hasn't been restored for DVD, so.. be warned.
I'd seen Sting in the hit films, 'Quadrophenia', 'Stormy Monday' and 'Lock, Stock, and Two Smoking Barrels', so I always knew he could act, but I regard his leading role in 'Brimstone and Treacle' as one of his best performances. His character, the mysterious and dynamic Martin approaches the stuffy and cynical Tom Bates (Denholm Elliot), suggesting that they once knew each other. It is an attempt to get closer to him and his troubled family. Tom's wife (Joan Plowright) is confined to the home whilst looking after their beautiful daughter (Suzanna Hamilton), brain damaged since a hit and run accident.
At first Mr. Bates doesn't trust Martin, as indeed, neither does the audience, who are unable to decide whether he is an kindly angel or a devil from a mental institute. But, Mrs. Bates warms to him instantly and no one can deny that their daughter seems to be happy (and always wanting to speak) whenever he is around.
Very humourous and dark in equal measure, 'Brimstone and Treacle' is an excellent play by Dennis Potter. I didn't expect much judging by the rather cheap looking DVD, but you can't judge a book by it's over, especially not in this case.