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Masterpiece: Birdsong (U.K. Version) [Blu-ray]

4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
List Price: CDN$ 31.99
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Masterpiece: Birdsong (U.K. Version) [Blu-ray] + Masterpiece: Great Expectations (U.K. Edition) [Blu-ray] + Masterpiece: The Mystery of Edwin Drood [Blu-ray]
Price For All Three: CDN$ 59.97

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Product Details

Product Description


Busy screenwriter Abi Morgan (The Hour, The Iron Lady) adapts Sebastian Faulks's 1993 bestseller for this introspective Masterpiece Classic two-parter, which reflects on love and war in equal measure. Costume-drama veteran Eddie Redmayne (The Pillars of the Earth) plays Stephen Wraysford, a British textile man based in Amiens in 1910 (before his career skyrocketed, Michael Fassbender was attached to the role). While staying with Isabelle (Clémence Poésy, In Bruges) and her controlling husband, Stephen falls in love with his hostess, but her marriage and stepchildren stand in the way. The story continues to proceed along two tracks: Stephen's time with Isabelle and her sympathetic sister, Jeanne (Marie-Josée Croze), and his time as an imperiled lieutenant in the trenches of World War I, where he finds a friend in the selfless Jack (Joseph Mawle) and a foe in the callous Captain Gray (Matthew Goode) as memories of Amiens spur him on. If the peacetime scenes are light and leisurely--sometimes too leisurely--the wartime scenes are dark and tense as Stephen and his men crawl through tunnels, setting off explosions. Flashbacks reveal that Isabelle eventually returned his affection, except the course of their relationship did not run smoothly. By the end, he's lost most of the things he once desired, but an alternative path lies ahead. In this sense, Birdsong bears some comparison with Atonement and Downton Abbey, though the downbeat nature of the material won't be to all tastes. --Kathleen C. Fennessy

Product Description

Set before and during the great war, Birdsong captures the drama of that era on both a national and a personal scale. It is the story of Stephen, a young Englishman, who arrives in Amiens in 1910. His life goes through a series of traumatic experiences, from the clandestine love affair that tears apart the family with whom he lives, to the unprecedented experiences of the war itself.

Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
4.5 out of 5 stars
Most helpful customer reviews
9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Masterpiece has NEVER let me down. June 1 2012
By V. Buttino TOP 500 REVIEWER
Another masterful literary adaptation from Masterpiece Classic! What a stunning, aching portrayal of WWI!

I'm disappointed that there were only two episodes made (each being 90 minutes in length) -- I could have sat through hours and hours of this series! The casting was great and the cinematography was breath-taking. Each frame looked like a painting. The story itself was etched out slowly and beautifully, cutting back and forth to past and present times. A few people have commented that the series omitted a large chunk of the story from the novel, but doesn't that happen in every miniseries produced? We really can't expect the producers to stick to the story 100%, all of the time. So yes, despite the fact that some things were missing from the miniseries, I do think that Masterpiece and the BBC did a wonderful job in adapting this novel for the screen.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Another triumph for PBS Oct. 7 2012
I found Songbird to be slightly more interesting in the second half as missing pieces and emotions were explained and came together. If someone found this to be too sad or "depressing"...perhaps that is what war is? I thought that the second series fit perfectly well with the first and it was with great thought that this film moved forward and developed as it did. The film gave different vision of command during the war as opposed to some films that expand toward the absurdity of "generals" of which this is perfectly true but enough said for now. This film is no "Very Long Engagement" but succeeds in it's own story.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Birdson June 10 2012
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
Fabulous movie! The book is brilliant and the movie portrayed it well. It highlights the horrors of the trenches in WW1 intermingled with a beautiful love story. I will order from Amazon again as the DVD arrived promptly and in perfect condition.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Birdsong May 1 2014
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
This movie is a beautiful love story and the actors were perfect in their parts. I loved this movie from beginning to end. It was very realistic and had all the right components for a great classic!
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