The first two movies mentioned below are made-for-TV films I've seen before, dearly love and will undoubtedly watch again and again. Not so the other two. The third one I vaguely recall having seen before, found it to be "just okay," and now that I've seen it twice, am highly unlikely to ever watch it again. The fourth, the "classic" 1948 "Anna Karenina," I simply couldn't drag my way through. So, rating this DVD package as a whole, the star count ends up as middling, with an extra half star thrown in for its bargain price.
THE INHERITANCE is a 1997 made-for-TV movie based on a Louisa May Alcott story. There's nothing British about it: not its author, characters, accents or setting--Americans all. It stars Meredith Baxter, Tom Conti, Cari Shayne and Thomas Gibson (who, at the time, was also "Greg" of "Dharma & Greg" and now stars in the TV series "Criminal Minds.") Here he's the tall, dark, rich and handsome eligible bachelor that a wealthy family is trying to marry off to their visiting cousin, but his heart has other ideas. Has great potential as an annual Valentine's Day flick.
LOVE AMONG THE RUINS, a 1975 made-for-TV movie, is far and away the best made, best written and best acted film on this disc and the only one that seems to have never been sold separately on DVD. Starring Katharine Hepburn and Laurence Olivier, this is the story of an aging actress who finds herself in need of a defense attorney in an alienation of affection case, but unbeknownst to her, the lawyer she hires turns out to be a long forgotten former lover, who's still pining for her 50-some years later.
ST. IVES (pronounced "snEEV) is a 1998 movie based on a Robert Louis Stevenson story set during the Napoleonic wars. It tells of a swashbuckling French soldier who gets caught and sent to a Scottish prison where he meets a beautiful young woman visitor, escapes, sets out to find her, while, at the same time, eluding pursuit by the Brits--ofttimes with considerable derring-do. Running toward love while running away from the Brits--especially when it involves hiding in a balloon basket--adds unexpected challenges to both pursuits.
Leo Tolstoy's ANNA KARENINA is the story of an extramarital affair between aristocrats in 19th century Russia. It's been filmed 24 times so far, according to IMDB, and is promoted here, as "the greatest love story ever told." This version is NOT the Oscar nominated 2012 film of the same name with Keira Knightley; Nor is it the 1997 version with Sophie Marceau. This is the somewhat wobbly black and white 1948 "classic," starring the beautiful Vivien Leigh. The actor who plays her lover, the allegedly irresistible Count Vronsky, looks like a totally resistible dork to me and some of the reviews I've been reading from way back when suggest critics at the time seemed to think so too. The background music grates on the ears like Great Granny's Victrola. Time has not been kind to this one, at least what I saw of it; I gave up after about 30 minutes. For those who've seen the Knightley version (I haven't), it might make an interesting 64-years-later contrast & compare.
As with other films in the Miramax "British Cinema Collection" series, there are no extras, no subtitles, no closed captioning. A few annoyances: The films here are divided into "chapters," but they're just numbered, with nothing to show you where in the story a click would land you, and all too often that'll turn out to be smack dab in the middle of a key scene; also, the DVD opens, not with a screen shot of titles to select from, but with the title page of one of the films; if that's not the one you want, you click on "NEXT" instead of "play" and keep doing that until you get to the title page of the movie you DO want to watch, at which point you click "play." Still, for the money, probably forgivable and a pretty good buy.
P.S. None of the four is in widescreen.