Monday, February 6, 2012

Daniel Deronda (2002) [UR] ***

Daniel Deronda (Hugh Dancy) is the ward of a wealthy Englishman. He knows nothing of his origins, and yearns to find a path in life and something meaningful to do. Meanwhile he uses his generous allowance to aid less fortunate young women. Recovering a treasured bracelet for beautiful but arrogant Gwendolyn Harleth (Romola Garai), and saving the life of depressed and drowning Mirah Lapidoth (Jodhi May) involve Deronda in two love triangles, simultaneously.

This BBC production is well acted with gorgeous sets and costumes, but it moves much too slowly, and the plot line hangs much too precariously on chance encounters in the London Jewish ghetto and the Genoa, Italy harbor. Had this been a two-hour production, rather than three-and-one-half hours, and had Hugh Dancy displayed a little more passion and energy in his role, this would have been an even more satisfying romantic drama. Regardless, if you have enjoyed Hugh Dancy in romantic comedies or dramas, films like The Sleeping Dictionary, The Jane Austen Book Club or Adam, then you won’t want to miss Daniel Deronda

Labels: drama, history, romance

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