A trio of orphans becomes embroiled in a mysterious and long-running lawsuit in this sprawling BBC adaptation of the Charles Dickens novel. A legend in the legal circles of Victorian London, the messy inheritance case of Jarndyce and Jarndyce has been trickling through the courts for years with no end in sight. Nobleman John Jarndyce (Denis Lawson) has seen the case destroy more than one life, so when he becomes guardian to three young people -- beautiful Ada Clare (Carey Mulligan), Ada's cousin Richard Carstone (Patrick Kennedy), and her devoted companion, Esther Summerson (Anna Maxwell Martin) -- he vows to shield them from its pernicious effects by bringing them to the safety of his estate, the eponymous Bleak House. Richard, however, becomes obsessed with the unattainable Jarndyce inheritance, to the detriment of his career and mental health. Esther, meanwhile, remains haunted by her origins; the product of a scandalous pregnancy, she was raised by her aunt and knows nothing about her dead mother's identity. Meanwhile, imperious noblewoman Lady Dedlock (Gillian Anderson) plots to hide the evidence of her own mysterious past -- a quest that leads her to the intrigue surrounding Jarndyce and Jarndyce. She is but one of dozens of characters who find themselves drawn into the lawsuit's web of corruption, blackmail, and murder. Bleak House debuted October 27, 2005, on BBC One. It received its U.S. premiere on January 22, 2006, on PBS's Masterpiece Theatre, where the 15 British episodes were combined into six longer blocks. Britain's Royal Television Society named the series Best Drama Serial of 2005. A previous adaptation of Dickens' novel ran on Masterpiece Theatre in 1985. ~ Brian J. Dillard, Rovi
Inheritance and succession -- England -- Drama.
|Publisher|| [London] : Burbank, CA :BBC Video ;2006
Distributed in the USA and Canada by Warner Home Video,
Maxwell Martin, Anna,
Mulligan, Carey, 1985-
Anderson, Gillian, 1968-
Lunn, John, 1956-
Dickens, Charles, 1812-1870.
Davies, Andrew, 1936-
Collins, Pauline, 1940-
Lynch, John, 1961-
Parker, Nathaniel, 1962-
Richardson, Ian, 1934-2007.
Vegas, Johnny, 1971-
Clarke, Warren, 1947-2014.
Griffiths, Richard, 1947-2013.
Hancock, Sheila, 1933-
Warner Home Video (Firm)
British Broadcasting Corporation.
WGBH (Television station : Boston, Mass.)
Deep Indigo Productions.
BBC Video (Firm)
Anna Maxwell Martin, Denis Lawson, Carey Mulligan, Gillian Anderson, Tom Georgeson, Charles Dance, Lilo Baur, Pauline Collins, Charlie Brooks, Burn Gorman, Harry Eden, Tony Haygarth, Alistair McGowan, Sean McGinley, Patrick Kennedy, John Lynch, Nathaniel Parker, Anne Reid, Natalie Press, Liza Tarbuck, Roberta Taylor, Ian Richardson, Johnny Vegas, Timothy West, Warren Clarke, Joanna David, Richard Harrington, Richard Griffiths, Bryan Dick, Matthew Kelly, Alun Armstrong, Catherine Tate, Robert Pugh, Phil Davis, Michael Smiley, Hugo Speer, Tim Dantay, Dermot Crowley, Sheila Hancock.
Director of photography, Kiernan McGuigan ; editor, Paul Knight (episodes 1-9), Jason Krasucki (episodes 10-15) ; music, John Lunn.
With optional English subtitles; closed-captioned.
Contains all 15 episodes from the 2005 television mini-series.
Episodes 10-15 directed by Susanna White.
DVD; Dolby digital.
3 videodiscs (approximately 465 min.) : sound, color ; 4 3/4 in.