One of England?s most widely read authors, Dame Catherine Cookson penned more than ninety historical novels during her celebrated career. Set in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, many of her masterpieces have been br... more »ought to life in mini-series productions boasting lavish costumes and stunning on-location photography of Northeast England. From The Cinder Path (as seen on Masterpiece Theatre) to The Secret (based on Cookson?s only thriller, "The Harrogate Secret"), this anthology presents seven acclaimed adaptations, featuring star-studded casts that include Catherine Zeta-Jones, Ray Stevenson, James Purefoy and June Whitfield. 8 DVD set includes the mini-series:
The Cinder Path ? Colour Blind ? A Dinner of Herbs ? The Girl
The Secret ? The Tide of Life ? Tilly Trotter« less
I actually don't have this particular title. What I own is a Region 2 collection which has 24 discs, and encompasses all the Granada productions of Catherine Cookson's stories. Unfortunately, these have all been divided up into sets and single disc titles in the U.S. That being said, every single one of these tales are incredible and rewarding to track down, and crammed with acclaimed actors.
Catherine did not have it the easiest, was raised in poverty, thought her mother was her sister, and many of these stories were probably things she observed throughout her life, if not unlike her own. Writing novels ended up being cathartic and healing for her. And brought in loads of money. These tales are mostly lower and middle class, turn of century. Every episode is riveting, convoluted, takes a dark turn or two, and somehow people end up being resilient and rising above their unfortunate occurrences. There is some very severe and mature subject matter here, as it is humanly honest. These elements are never handled in a gratuitous way though. Complete list of the productions:
The Moth, The Black Velvet Gown, The Black Candle, The Secret, The Mallen Streak, The Mallen Girls, The Mallen Secret, The Mallen Curse, The Girl, The Fifteen Streets, The Rag Nymph, The Wingless Bird, The Dwelling Place, The Glass Virgin, Tilly Trotter, The Cinder Path, The Man Who Cried, The Round Tower, The Tide of Life, Colour Blind, A Dinner of Herbs Part 1, Dinner of Herbs Part 2, The Gambling Man, The Storyteller
Die Hard Cookson Fans Will Love This
J. Lovins | 10/03/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)
"The Cinder Path was a long-awaited movie after growing up reading as many Catherine Cookson books as I could get my hands on. I have always been a die hard fan since I first read The Dwelling Place. This story, like most of Cookson's others, present a true-to-life hardship and how the characters react, deal with, and survive the sometimes cruel and unfair obstacles life throws their way.This film features a pre-Hollywood Catherine Zeta Jones as the haughty and spoiled brat. She plays this role to a tee and was (before being "spoiled" by Hollywood) one of my favorite actresses previously because of this role. Everyone can enjoy this movie, relate to the hardships and life's tough decisions. All in all, it has a great message, but learning life's lessons is not all that easy."
Catherine Cookson's poignant and beautiful novel comes alive
Ursula Kuenzle | Zürich | 07/04/2000
(4 out of 5 stars)
"All his young life Charlie McFell, his familiy and the farm hands were tyranzied by his dictatorial father, which punished brutally on the Cinder Path. As his father met with an "accident" and died, young Charlie was ill-equipped to manage the farm. He is pressured into a loveless marriage with the haughty and faithless Victoria, leaving her sister Nellie, who secretly loves him, heartbroken. As World War I breaks out he is forced to join the British Army and the horrors and hardship of the frontlines finally let him become a man of strength and character. He is now able to overcome the heartbreak, blackmail, cruelty, revenge and deception to ultimately find his true love.The Cinder Path is based on the bestselling novel of Catherine Cookson. If you love period Jane Austen-like romantic drama this one is for you. Why did I not give five stars? I did not like the extensive war and battle-scenes. Furthermore, I thought it a shame that this DVD does not feature any extras (no widescreen, foreign languages, subtitels, behind the scenes information). But all in all it is a beautiful crafted movie."
A Tail of human growth, Maria Miles' grestest performance !!
RUSTEE (email@example.com) | LOUISIANA BUT FROM ENGLAND | 08/28/1999
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This tail follows the trials and tribulations of Charlie MacFell from an unsure University student to a high ranking Army officer during the first world war. The only thing that stands in his way is a secret known only to him, farm hands Polly and Arthur and the devious Ginger Slater. Victoria (Catherine Zeta-Jones) is (reluctanatly) Charlies bitchie adulterous wife, her sister Nellie (maria miles) harbours secret feelings for Charlie which will either make or destroy her. A true love story but definately a tale you must think about and may or maynot agree with each characters actions and chioces, finally a true to life love story, not sugar coated!!"
Stirring Drama --- Maria Miles delivers an exceptional perfo
James B. Casey | Chicago, Illinois | 02/28/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Set in the rural areas around Newcastle during the years 1913-1918, this impressive dramatization of Cookson's work centers on the personal struggles of a wealthy young land owner (Charlie) who is seen by many around him as a weakling and utter failure until he is thrown into the cauldron of military service on the Western Front and is forced by circumstances to fight and lead or perish. Much of his inspiration and will to survive comes from the love and devotion of Nellie, the troubled younger sister of his unfaithful, stunningly beautiful wife Victoria.
Although the starring roles are played ably by Lloyd Owen and Catherine Zeta-Jones, the most memorable and arresting performance was delivered by Maria Miles as Nellie. Maria Miles brought her character to life and graced her with a beauty that surpassed even that of Catherine Zeta-Jones. In fact, the character of Nellie emerges from personal depression to become one of the genuinely strong and likeable figures in of the Cookson series (and I have seen them all).