I took a chance and purchased this dvd purely based on your reviews. I must say that I am simply enamored by this movie. Yes, it differs to the book but it is certainly forgivable. One simply has to understand that it is based on two of Baroness Orczy books and then it all falls into place.
Now, for the movie. Anthony Andrews as the foppish/valiant Sir Percy was excellent. I thought he delivered an exceptional performance. I could not find any fault in his performance especially since the book Percy is so inane and a complete idiot...well, at least, his alter ego in any case. At times, it is so amusing to watch him, especially when he tries to undo Chauvelin. **smiles** I cannot say enough about his performance. When he is also conflicted by his love for Maguerite and his cold treatment of her, it is also beautifully done. His expressions are so real. His concern for the families of the aristos adds such a beautiful side to his character as well. You can actually see that he cares.
Jane Seymour as Maguerite was wonderful as well. The chemistry between her and Anthony Andrews was superb. They conveyed so much fire simply by a glance.
Ian Mckellan was also good. I must admit that when I realized he would play the villian that did not sit well with me (I love him as Gandalf but he really looks different out of the wizard's costume), however, it worked out well.
In conclusion, I thought this was a splendid movie. The sets, the music, the dances, etc were all engaging. There was never a dull moment. I actually ordered the film for my mum since I figure she would love it as well. Though I have never seen any of the other versions, I cannot imagine another one uprooting the love I feel for this one. It would be demmed near impossible.