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4th-Nov-2016 09:32 pm - Thoughts: The Moonstone (2016)

The BBC broadcast an adaptation of The Moonstone this week. Before I watched it, I wasn't sure why they felt the need to; the 1996 version seemed perfectly adequate to me. Now, having watched it... I'm of pretty much the same opinion.

This one was longer (almost twice as long) but still didn't reintroduce all the elements that were cut in the 1996 version. It strayed rather further from the text (for example, giving Lady Verinder a deathbed scene with Rachel; very Victorian-novel, but not in the book or the 1996 version) and felt a little padded here and there. Perhaps because they weren't able to realise Rosanna's death on screen, there was instead an interpolated scene with Franklin Blake nearly drowning that went on for ages and advanced the plot not one iota.

As to the cast... well, they weren't bad, but a lot of them weren't on the level of the 1996 version. Which, given the 1996 version had the likes of Antony Sher, Peter Vaughan, Lesley Sharp, Greg Wise and Keeley Hawes, perhaps isn't such a surprise.

(I haven't seen the 1972 version, but looking on IMDB I see that the wicked Colonel was played by Colin Baker. And that there was a 1959 version where he was played by none other than Barry Letts, but that's probably long been consigned to the flames).

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