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Post Info TOPIC: Review of 1970s Poldark productions


Student

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Date: Jan 20 6:16 PM, 2017
RE: Review of 1970s Poldark productions
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There have been a few productions - movie or television - that have proven to be better than the novels they are based upon.

 

But I agree with everyone here that Graham's novels are better than the two television productions.



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Student

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Date: Jan 19 9:18 PM, 2017
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Just have to agree. The visual of watching a series is wonderful, but nothing at all beats reading the books. Maybe that is because I love reading.



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Date: Jan 19 5:34 PM, 2017
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Hollyhock wrote:

Stella- I agree with all you say. It was the current series one (and Aidan) that pulled me in and left me hungering for more. I found I could not possibly wait another year for series two and so plunged heart-first into the books. I am so happy I did because I found the series to be just an appetizer to rich full course meal of the books. The series can never match the magic of the read, but it did help to bring alive some of the imagery.  However if DH keeps getting it so wrong, I may not be able to persevere to the end.  


 Hollyhock - my feelings exactly about probably not watching any more of either the 1970s series or the current one. We are straying off topic a bit here but I want to mention something that comes from a reliable source. Apparently DH had written only three episodes when filming began for series 2 so perhaps that is why it all came across as frenzied in its pace and why the acting was not as good a standard as series one. I shall be hoping for better in series 3.



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Date: Jan 19 4:59 PM, 2017
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Stella- I agree with all you say. It was the current series one (and Aidan) that pulled me in and left me hungering for more. I found I could not possibly wait another year for series two and so plunged heart-first into the books. I am so happy I did because I found the series to be just an appetizer to rich full course meal of the books. The series can never match the magic of the read, but it did help to bring alive some of the imagery.  However if DH keeps getting it so wrong, I may not be able to persevere to the end.  



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Date: Jan 19 4:31 PM, 2017
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MrsMartin wrote:
Ross Poldark wrote:

Just for the record I've never been interested or involved in the films at all as WG's imagination is all that's needed, not someone else's....wink


 Although I agree with you completely Ross, if it was not for the 70's adaptation of Poldark, I would never have heard of Winston Graham. At the time I was a teenager and more interested a visual style of storytelling. I think that if not for these adaptations, the Poldark saga, would not have found as wide of an audience and though they aren't not as rich as the books, they have introduce more people to them.


Oh yes true enough anything to spread the word, but I was originally referring to one's final judgement at the end of the day....smile



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Date: Jan 19 4:25 PM, 2017
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MrsMartin wrote:
Ross Poldark wrote:

Just for the record I've never been interested or involved in the films at all as WG's imagination is all that's needed, not someone else's....wink


 Although I agree with you completely Ross, if it was not for the 70's adaptation of Poldark, I would never have heard of Winston Graham. At the time I was a teenager and more interested a visual style of storytelling. I think that if not for these adaptations, the Poldark saga, would not have found as wide of an audience and though they aren't not as rich as the books, they have introduce more people to them.


 Mrs Martin - and this is the point. Without the 70s series and the new one there would be much less awareness of W.G.'s books. Like you, I would probably never have found the books without seeing the series. The only down side for me was that after seeing series 1 in 2015 and thoroughly enjoying it, I then read all the books and did not enjoy series 2 much at all because it strayed considerably from the books 3 and 4. There is always something lost in the visual presentation of a story but there are some things that are valuable too I think. Seeing the Cornish countryside, the costumes and hearing the Cornish accent and language adds something to the books I think.

Stella



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Date: Jan 19 4:20 PM, 2017
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You are completely correct, MrsMartin - the 70s series were a phenomenon.  They really took the world by storm - well the UK anyhow.  I had already immersed myself in the books then, but I believe book sales rocketed as a result of the serial.

Anyone who remembers back that far will know that it was the Downton Abbey of its day.  We had no TV in those days, only succumbing in 1985, but newspapers were full of it, magazines interviewed most of the actors and you would have had to hibernate to miss knowing of it.

Now the new series is doing it all over again.  Sufficient time has passed that new generations are discovering WGs wonderful masterpiece.

 

Tell us, MrsMartin - have you got 8, 11 or 12 children? !



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Date: Jan 19 3:38 PM, 2017
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Ross Poldark wrote:

Just for the record I've never been interested or involved in the films at all as WG's imagination is all that's needed, not someone else's....wink


 Although I agree with you completely Ross, if it was not for the 70's adaptation of Poldark, I would never have heard of Winston Graham. At the time I was a teenager and more interested a visual style of storytelling. I think that if not for these adaptations, the Poldark saga, would not have found as wide of an audience and though they aren't not as rich as the books, they have introduce more people to them.



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Date: Jan 19 12:20 PM, 2017
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I always thought nothing could top the 70s series, but when I heard Aidan Turner was going to play Ross I was thrilled - from Being Human he showed he can play tough and vulnerable at the same time, and convey a thousand emotions with just a flick of his eyelashes (I once saw Michael Caine do a Masterclass on acting for camera where he demonstrated just that.) Although Robin was brilliant in the role, comparing the two I think Aidan's Ross is more believable as someone who is able to move smoothly between the worlds of "society" and the miners, as WG describes - Robin's Ross always seemed more of the gentleman who was decent to the miners. The contrast particularly shows in the bit where Jim Carter asks about a job on the Nampara farm. I think costume also plays a part here - Robin's outfits were always quite structured, whereas many of Aidan's look like scruffy working clothes. It's also in his physicality - Robin was an actor of his time, stood up straight, where Aidan moves more fluidly (he was a dancer before turning to acting, and it shows.) 

The other character I like much better is Francis. Kyle Stoller is such a good actor, and portrays Francis's turbulence so well - I felt Clive Francis came across as a bit of a sulky adolescent. One of Kyle's best moments was at this father's graveside, when he says, "Apparently I'm now one of the most important men in the county." So much nuance in one short line.

I loved Angharad Rees as Demelza, but comparing the two I think they made her more childish, with a lot of shouting and pouting. I know she was written as a child at the beginning, but clearly couldn't be that in the programme as she was played by an adult woman, so the childishness tends to jar a bit. Eleanor plays her "young" bits as nervous, self-conscious - I love the attempted curtsey the first time she is introduced to Verity. We've discussed elsewhere the mess the 70s series made of the lead-up to Ross and Demelza's marriage.

Ah, and Verity. I felt the Verity in the 70s series came across as a very confident young woman, whereas again Ruby Benthall captures her vulnerability very well. When Captain Blamey rides away after the duel, I felt sorry for Verity in the 70s series - in the new series, I had to wipe a tear. 



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Date: Jan 19 9:22 AM, 2017
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I entirely agree, Ross. 

As many of you know, I have only seen a very few bits of the 70s series.  I wasn't speaking about the production or the acting particularly, but if you read the description of Ross in the First Edition RP, Robin Ellis comes very close to it, much more so than Aidan Turner.

One thing I did notice in the bits I did see (and it's only about 4 or 5 years ago I saw it) was how much Ross stood out.  He was so much taller than the rest of the cast, which seemed absolutely right. WG makes much mention of Ross' height throughout the whole 12 books.

Comparing different series 40 years apart is almost impossible. To begin with neither adaptation is faithful to the books and think how technology has changed over that time.  Almost anything is achievable nowadays, whereas in the 70s TV dramas were produced like theatre plays, and had no computer aids to work magic tricks.

Books forever for me.



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Date: Jan 19 8:39 AM, 2017
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Just for the record I've never been interested or involved in the films at all as WG's imagination is all that's needed, not someone else's....wink



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Student

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Date: Jan 19 6:39 AM, 2017
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I believe Society members were convinced no-one could take Robin and Angharad's place, so it was bound to get an, at best,  luke-warm reception.  

 

It's ironic, considering that Winston Graham liked the 1996 movie.

 



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Date: Jan 19 4:10 AM, 2017
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Fijane wrote:

I like Robin Ellis, but he looked like someone else playing at Ross, not Ross in himself. 

-----------------------------------------------

Fijane,

I wholeheartedly agree--even though I have never actually seen any of the 1970s series. For me Robin Ellis will always be the sanctimonious Rev. Halse.

There will only ever be one Ross Poldark for me--Aidan Turner!



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Date: Jan 18 10:03 PM, 2017
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As I have only seen the first few episodes of the 1975 series, it was interesting to watch this. Why would they call Francis a villian, on par with George?

This has confirmed to me that I could never go back to watch the rest. I know that how viewers perceive beloved characters depends on which one they saw first, and it is true for me. I like Robin Ellis, but he looked like someone else playing at Ross, not Ross in himself. Angharad's voice is not to my liking, and she doesn't seem to have the innocence of Elinor's Demelza. Elizabeth is not very beautiful and Norma Streader is too beautiful. The scenes felt overacted to me.

I know I will be howled down for preferring the new series. Some of things I don't like about the old one are purely due to the quality of production being so much more advanced now, but I am afraid that the old series will never create the magic of the new in my mind.

 



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Date: Jan 18 7:17 PM, 2017
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The whole problem with Stranger From The Sea (which I have never seen), stems from the fact that Robin Ellis and Angharad Rees were asked to play the lead roles, as they had on BBC.  The whole situation got out of hand, and the actors walked away from it because allegedly, a gentleman's agreement was broken.  The replacement actors were looked on aghast by the Poldark Appreciation Society, who were strong at that point.  I remember the whole story made the newspaper front pages, TV news and goodness knows what else. 

I believe Society members were convinced no-one could take Robin and Angharad's place, so it was bound to get an, at best,  luke-warm reception.  Possibly, fans of the current series may feel the same if Ross and Demelza were played by different actors in series 3.

Have you read WG Memoirs, Ljones?  He does write about it all.

Do you agree that Robin Ellis is the living embodiment of WGs description of Ross?



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Date: Jan 18 4:42 PM, 2017
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It's not a bad documentary, but I think this could have been a little bit more in-depth on the series I noticed that it had skimmed a bit on some of the topics in Graham's novels. I also feel that it could have been another 20 minutes longer. It's interesting that Winston Graham liked the 1996 adaptation of "Stranger From the Sea" and most people didn't. I just saw it recently and thought it was pretty decent for a story.

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Date: Nov 13 1:37 PM, 2016
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https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g83FJkqAxSY&sns=fb

This is an interesting review with hindsight on the 1970s Poldark productions. It helps to compare the two.

Stella



-- Edited by Stella Poldark on Sunday 13th of November 2016 01:38:15 PM

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