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Brideshead Revisited

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United Kingdom, Italy, Morocco · 2008
Rated PG-13 · 2h 13m
Director Julian Jarrold
Starring Matthew Goode, Ben Whishaw, Hayley Atwell, Emma Thompson
Genre Drama, Romance

When the charming aristocrat Sebastian invites Charles Ryder to his family's estate, Charles becomes seduced by the opulent lifestyle of the Marchmain family, and by Julia, Sebastian's sister. As their romance deepens, repercussions follow, and Charles discovers that at Brideshead, love, money, and power come at a price.

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What are critics saying?


Village Voice by

Though I can imagine Waugh rolling his eyes at the very idea of Brideshead Revisited as "a heartbreaking romantic epic," this remake is, often inadvertently, closer to the novel's spirit than the sepulchral television series, albeit still not half as waggishly Waugh-ish as "Bright Young Things," Stephen Fry's delightfully naughty interpretation of "Vile Bodies."


NPR by Bob Mondello

This is a world of dinner jackets and evening gowns, casual jaunts to Venice and Morocco; it's about elegance, style, money and perhaps too heady a mix of drink, religion and intrigue.


Philadelphia Inquirer by Carrie Rickey

The film is plush and passionate and graced with elegant performances. Best is that of Emma Thompson as Brideshead's matriarch, Lady Marchmain, who resembles a cross between Helen Mirren's Queen Elizabeth II and Pope Benedict.


Variety by Dennis Harvey

Offers lush and compelling drama drawn from Evelyn Waugh's beloved novel. Purists may blanch at the screenplay's changes to the source material's narrative fine points, but its spirit survives intact.


ReelViews by James Berardinelli

There are times when Brideshead Revisited shows its seams. For those with an affinity for this kind of movie - and you know whether this applies to you - Brideshead Revisited is a worthy, although not superior, motion picture.


Washington Post by Michael O'Sullivan

The real question is whether the film moves the "Brideshead" ball down the playing field in any meaningful way since the acclaimed miniseries. And I'd have to say that it doesn't so much advance it as it shrinks it into a golf-ball-size nugget.

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