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The Edwardians [DVD] [1972]

2.7 out of 5 stars 19 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Actors: Anthony Hopkins, Francis Terry, Timothy West, Thorley Walters, Nigel Davenport
  • Directors: John Howard Davies
  • Producers: Mark Shivas
  • Format: PAL, Colour
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 4
  • Classification: PG
  • Studio: Acorn
  • DVD Release Date: 6 July 2009
  • Run Time: 720 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 2.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (19 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00264GB06
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 16,056 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Product Description

Product Description

Eight-part BBC drama series from 1972, starring Anthony Hopkins and Timothy West, which examines the dynamic and enterprising individuals of Edwardian Britain: an era which is accountable for some of the greatest accomplishments, and most catastrophic failures, in the country's history. Hopkins plays David Lloyd George and Nigel Davenport stars in one episode as Arthur Conan Doyle.

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD
Ok...Acorn should, perhaps, have made it clearer that only the first and final episodes are in colour. The series was shot in colour but the colour prints for most of the episodes would seem to have been junked and, clearly, no one felt this series justified the expense of restoration (all the prints are a little blurred and time-worn).

However, it's all about the drama/writing/acting, all of which is of a consistently high standard. If you don't know much about the origins of Rolls Royce, the life of E Nesbit (she didn't just write the Railway Children, you know), the origins of the Scout movement or Lloyd George's rise to power, this is a good place to get started.

Not all the episodes are of the same high standard: I felt the Conan Doyle one dragged somewhat. Best of the bunch, though, is Horatio Bottomley, with Timothy West cast to perfection as the charming rogue. The Daisy episode tends to be slammed but I was surprised to enjoy it....interesting experimental film techniques on show here. There's also a fascinating episode on the Music Hall Artists' strike of 1906, which 'features' George Formby Senior.

So, I'd urge people who enjoyed Fall Of Eagles and other contemporaenous BBC series to give this one a go...it isn't expensive and it makes for hours of absorbing viewing.
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This is an interesting series of short films about key Edwardians. The episodes are made in black and white and the quality of the images and sound are not comparable with the quality we are used to today. Having said that my husband and I have not found the quality to spoil our enjoyment of the films.
The subjects range from Rolls and Royce, through Conan Doyle, Baden-Powell and E Nesbit. The enjoyment (or not) of each film will depend on your personal likes and dislikes; the only episode we decided not to watch in full was that on the writer E Nesbit. For us by far the best was the first film of the first disk - Mr Rolls and Mr Royce. The story of the wreckless Rolls, a noble addicted to speed and risk, and obsessive Royce who buys a motorcar only to have it taken apart at his engineering workshop so that it can be rebuilt to a reliable standard. Each of the actors playing the title roles gives a good performance and there was much about this strange partnership that we had not been aware of.
A second really good episode is that on Horatio Bottomley. I had never even heard of this character before but my husband and I both thoroughly enjoyed this film, described as a history of a 'rogue, financier, publisher, politician and public speaker' (nothing really changes it seems).
The series was produced in 1972 and it certainly doesn't seem to have had the budget of the contemporaneous Upstairs Downstairs but there are some good stories largely based on true events.
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Format: DVD
Scrupulously researched and superbly acted, this is definitely a series of quality, perfectionism and integrity. I could sense how much work went into each of the plays, and felt that this DVD merited what I paid for it.

With the exception of Daisy, they are dialogue-led and can be rather dry in places. So, I don't think this DVD would hold the attention of a child who was researching the period for a school project, for example. It's pretty heavy stuff.

Viewers who enjoy Edwardian features for the settings, nostalgia and costuming might be rather disappointed with this because it's all about the stories, and getting to grips with the characters. It's a learning experience.

I would definitely recommend it, but you need to be prepared to focus. If you're interested in any of the characters but don't know much about them, then this DVD is an excellent resource.

It's not necessary to watch the episodes in order, or indeed, to watch all of them. They are not linked in any way.
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This dvd was ok... A little disjointed. It didn't spoil it as some people have said because some of sections where in black and white.
The subject matter was good it's a pity the scripts for some of the episodes were poor.
I did find out things didn't know so in that respect it's good.
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Format: DVD
This is an interesting collection of dramas that says as much about the culture and attitudes of the time they were made as they do about the Edwardian era. I wonder if Baden-Powell and his dubious career and Lloyd-George and his philandering would be let off the hook so easily today. It was also interesting to see the techniques used to tell the stories within a short time frame and without sophisticated special effects or make up, this was especially so in the episodes about Lady Warwick and Horatio Bottomley.
Having said that the quality of the story telling and the acting is uneven and the cover with all the stills in colour is misleading. There are better old dramas out there Edward vii being one of the best.
One plus point is that unlike many dvds of old dramas this one has sub-titles.
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BBC TV production-Colour for the first and last (8th) episodes-B&W the other episodes. Why they are in B&W is not apparent as they were originally videotaped in colour according to the credits on each episode. This is not explained nor forgiveable.
This series was produced after the BBC's excellent "Forsythe Saga" and ITV's excellent "Upstairs, Downstairs" but before the BBC's "Fall of Eagles" (also good). However, this series has not stood the test of time and now looks very very dated (1972) with stilted acting and strained dialogue. It is very theatrical in its whole presentation and pacing, with the episode on "Daisy" being the best illustration of that, providing a seemingly dreamlike fantasy episode rather than TV drama.
The idea seems to be to use snipits of information about the era and the people involved to try to give us a feeling of the period. The best episode is that on Lloyd George (Anthony Hopkins). I am afraid that the series producer - Mark Shivas - who had already gained a good reputation previously with his productions for Granada TV, did not shine on this one.
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