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Lady Chatterley - DVD

Joely Richardson , Sean Bean    NR (Not Rated)   DVD
4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
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From the director of Women in Love and Altered States comes a retelling of the literary classic that launched the most celebrated obscenity trial of the 20th century. In adapting the famous tale of unbridled passion, Ken Russell has made a moving love story and some of the most talked about television of the 1990s. Joely Richardson (Return to Me, The Affair of the Necklace) stars as the young, sexually repressed Lady Chatterley, whose paralyzed husband (James Wilby, Gosford Park) urges her to find fulfillment and an heir for his fortune in the arms of another man. Sean Bean (Patriot Games, The Lord of the Rings) is the lowly gamekeeper whose scandalous attentions awaken her senses. DVD special features include an exclusive interview with writer/director Ken Russell, behind-the-scenes photo gallery, broadcast trailer, cast and crew filmographies and DH Lawrence biography.


Those who believe British miniseries to be too proper and corseted may want to make an exception for Ken Russell's 1992, four-hour BBC adaptation of D.H. Lawrence's scandalous novel. Between the full frontal female nudity and empowering shed-rocking sex scenes, this is something for everyone to have a randy good time. To save you the bother of fast-forwarding, episodes two and three contain the very naughtiest bits involving the illicit affair between "loyal wife, good companion" Constance Chatterly (Joely Richardson) and Oliver Mellors (Sean Bean), gamekeeper to Constance's embittered, paralyzed husband (James Wilby). When he insists his wife take a lover and produce an heir to his fortune, he didn't have the lowly "wild man of the woods" in mind. Neither did Constance, but soon enough the woods are alive with the sound of heavy-panting and frantic gropings up against trees. The production is impeccably mounted--no pun intended--and the performances (particularly the daring Ms. Richardson) impassioned. Save for one dream sequence involving a black horse (a symbol of passion, one character helpfully explains), and the, at times, overheated musical score that threatens to overwhelm the lovers, Russell (Tommy, Altered States) holds his tendencies toward excess in check. --Donald Liebenson

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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Sean Bean in Top Form (Acting and Otherwise!) July 4 2003
By A Customer
It is rare that a novel can successfully be adapted to the screen without losing much of its force. Lady Chatterley, Ken Russell's adaptation of D.H. Lawrence's Lady Chatterley's Lover, however, loses almost none of the force of the original source. The novel was banned when it came out, and one viewing of Lady Chatterley will explain why.
The British VHS box for Lady Chatterley boasts that it is filled with "very, very erotic sex." That is about the most accurate statement you can make about this movie. Lest one get the wrong idea, however, this made-for-TV movie is not pornography. It utilizes the original plot, cutting out some of the more social aspects of the novel, to tell a beautiful story about one woman's search for love -- sexual and otherwise -- outside of her marriage and class.
Joely Richardson, best known in the U.S. for cavorting with Mel Gibson in "The Patriot," here bares it all early and often with Sean Bean. Both of them shine in their respective roles. Ms. Richardson is brilliant as a strong, independent woman whose husband is crippled during WWI, thus basically ending her sexual life prematurely. Sean Bean plays her lowly, gamekeeper lover, Oliver Mellors. The dirty, scruffy, growling Mellors is the perfect vehicle for Sean Bean's talent -- part bad guy, part sensual lover, in many ways a guilty pleasure (much like Sean Bean himself!)
This is not a movie for immature audiences -- it is as beautiful a story as it is erotic, much the way D. H. Lawrence wrote it. Nor is it for the faint of heart -- the sex scenes are revealing and very intense. It is beautifully shot, wonderfully acted, and overall, is an amazing cinematic experience. The 3.5 hours are well worth watching, at least for fans of Joely Richardson or Sean Bean.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent, compelling miniseries! March 12 2004
By A Customer
Very entertaining look at Lady Chatterley. After reading the book I was very curious to see how the story could be brought to life! Ken Russell has done a fine job and the two lead actors bring life to Lady C and Mellors. Prior to this movie, I did not think Sean Bean (Mellors) was anything special, but after seeing his portrayl in this movie- all that has changed. He is superb and an excellent leading man- just perfect- I do not see how any woman could not fall for him in this role. Easy to see how Lady C does! Buy this DVD- you will not be disappointed!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautifully filmed, sympathetic characters Dec 19 2003
Lady Chatterly is the story of a rich young aristocrat who takes her gamekeeper for a lover after her husband returns from the war, paralyzed. Despite the subject matter (adultery), I really enjoyed this film. The screenplay is written in such a way that you quite understand why Lady Chatterly has an affair. AND all four of the main leads were quite sympathetic, even though the husband is at times emotionally abusive. While, personally I fast forwarded all of the sex scenes, I thought the film was beautifully filmed and directed. Five stars for an excellent and entertaining film.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Great adaptation of a controversial novel Aug. 7 2009
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
A very good job Ken Russell did by adapting another novel of D H Lawrence. Not only did he directed and co-wrote an adaptation from a very controversial novel who exists in three different versions, though the third is the most common in bookstores, Ken Russell combined elements from the second and from the third version, mixing together only the best elements and keeping the same storey together. Like he says in the interview on the dvd, he tried to remain in the spirit of the novel.

Great compliments go to all the actors, including Joely Richardson and Sean Bean, whose chemistry is perfect. Thanks to that, it makes the relationship between all characters believable.

Though the music soundtrack is not the same as the one used during the original broadcasts, apart from the music played on the piano by the characters, I found the public-domain music used on the dvd very good. Though it would have been nice to know from Ken Russell in his interview which english composers he used for his original broadcast.

Anyway, an excellent tv series to watch.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Lady Chatterley Nov. 7 2003
By A Customer
Format:VHS Tape
D. H. Lawrence's classic and erotic novel, "Lady Chatterley's Lover",is beautifully filmed and retold in this Ken Russell video production.
Lovely Joley Richardson plays Lady Constance Chatterley, in the title role, as a sexually and socially repressed young English woman in the early 1920's. She is married to Sir Clifford Chatterley, played by Michael Wilby,as a titled, WW1 British officer, whose war injuries have paralized him from the waist down.
We watch as Constance accepts her fate at first, and loyally looks after her demanding,upper-class husband. The isolation and Sir Clifford's constant need for care take its' toll, and soon Lady Chatterley's mental and physical health is in question. A nurse-companion, Mrs. Bolton, is hired from the local colliery town of Tevershall, thus relieving Connie of her duties, giving her more time to visit with her family members and,to go for long walks in the near-by woods. Soon, her wanderings cross paths with Sir Clifford's reclusive,irrasible,lowly bred game keeper, Oliver Mellors.
Actor Sean Bean, with his rakish and sensual "bad boy" good looks, plays Mellors with great intensity and honest passion. He is perfectly cast as the angry, down trodden man who finds new life and "the only freedom" he has ever known,in the love he shares with the independant, and equally passionate Lady Chatterley.
This adaptation follows the literary novel closely. (Please read the book, if you haven't already, as some of the warmly passionate and meaningful scenes have been left out for the sake of censorship and the movies length). The video "fleshes out" (pardon the pun!)the novel that features lots of dialogue in the book.
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Most recent customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Well Done
I am a huge fan of Sean Bean and this film was so well-done I watch it over and over again. Both he and Joely Richardson are fantastic and their chemistry is palpable. Read more
Published 25 days ago by Anna
5.0 out of 5 stars I was impressed with the quality of the video as ...
I was impressed with the quality of the video as compared to the computer version. The content of L C ,although it does not follow the original book ,is a study of early 20 t h... Read more
Published 4 months ago by Gail I H Smith
5.0 out of 5 stars -"My lady"...say it again, Sean!!!
Brilliant! I bought this movie because of Sean Bean (I just wanted to hear him saying "lass"...) and because I love british drama. I just finished it and I am not disappointed. Read more
Published on Nov. 12 2003 by "260875"
5.0 out of 5 stars The story of a young and sexually repressed woman
Now available in a DVD format, Lady Chatterley is the dramatic and passionate BBC miniseries directed by Ken Russell and based upon the D.H. Read more
Published on Oct. 18 2003 by Midwest Book Review
5.0 out of 5 stars Well acted, fairly explicit, not on Masterpiece Theatre soon
This adaption of D.H. Lawrence has fairly explicit content, for a BBC adaption, and certainly won't be on Masterpiece Theatre, any time soon; at least, without some heavy editing. Read more
Published on Sept. 22 2003 by Michael D. Chlanda
3.0 out of 5 stars Where is the gameskeeping?
Ken Russell is still the master of D.H. Lawrence on film - at least for now. If you like the original purple prose, which I do, you should like the purple in this series. Read more
Published on July 5 2003
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