Lynsey Baxter

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Gormenghast Review


Good
This BBC four-part miniseries adapts Mervyn Peake's epic fantasy novels for the small screen, with Jonathan Rhys-Meyers as the backstabbing upstart looking to gain control over the odd, timeless kingdom of Gormenghast, by any means necessary. Shot on a low budget, the series has enough cleverness, nifty effects, and curious characters to make its 6-hour running time worthwhile -- if only the BBC didn't play 4 minutes of commercials for every 10 minutes of movie. On DVD or VHS, you'll likely find Gormenghast a more palatable experience.

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The French Lieutenant's Woman Review


OK
If you can remember anything about this 1981 movie, it's probably the image of Meryl Streep standing at the end of a pier, threatened to be blown into the sea by a horrendous storm.

Now released on DVD, the complicated tale of The French Lieutenant's Woman tells us of a 19th century English woman named Sarah (Streep), a woman who finds herself at the bottom of the social strata because she has had an affair (and been tossed aside) by a French military officer. When an engaged biologist named Charles (Jeremy Irons) encounters her on that pier, he becomes immediately entranced, and soon they are engaged in an affair.

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