The pursuit of love
On his beautiful English property, Lord Alconleigh (Dominic West) decides that his beautiful English daughters will never leave the family home, except to marry beautiful English gentlemen.
“Church, stables, tennis courts,” he yells, listing the facilities on offer. “Why would they ever want to leave?
He wants his frosts to rot in the ivory towers of Alconleigh, with their worn sweaters and impoverished spirits, until proper marriages are made.
Not random cadets or handsome swains (all “sewers” according to him) but husbands who meet his approval, preferably his deaf buddies in the House of Lords.
Lord Alconleigh (Dominic West) determines his daughters will never leave home except to marry handsome gentlemen, but his daughter Linda (both pictured) (Lily James) has other ideas
Her favorite daughter Linda (Lily James) has other ideas. He is a wild and nervous creature, full of passion and desire, a total magnet ie.
“I want life to be exciting,” she says. Linda is a starter, not a remnant.
Much has been said about the supposed real romance between the married West and the free James, which apparently blossomed on the set of this new three-part adaptation of Nancy Mitford’s classic interwar novel.
Still, little forbidden ardor seeps into their scenes together, not least because they play a father and daughter – so let’s keep that legal.
Instead, he roars like a tweed tornado, sporting a mustache that would be the envy of any walrus.
In large rooms, chilled by fatherly disapproval, he punishes Linda for her defiance, as she rebels against his intimidating restrictions – but still loves him.
“He’s scary and I disapprove of him so much. But in a way he sets the bar for English manhood, ”she said. Indeed.
But who couldn’t fall in love with Lily in this brilliant drama? Her Linda is irresistible, a champagne bubble girl, raven-haired and hungry for romance – though ill-prepared for its consequences.
The supposed real romance between the married West and James (pictured in Rome) apparently blossomed on the set of this three-part adaptation of Nancy Mitford’s novel.
Whether splashing around in his bath or riding dogs in his jodhpurs, James captures the quicksilver, absurd lust of a character who blossoms into a woman who would have liked to think she was’ “ more than a little sin of the body ”. Should I say it again? Indeed.
Cousin Fanny (Emily Beecham) is the Bridget Jones of the hour; Linda’s devoted columnist, narrator and timid Robin of the flamboyant Batman.
She is also an eternal disappointment to her uncle Matthew (Lord Alconleigh) as not only has she been educated, but she introduces her daughter to scary non-U words such as “fireplace” and “stationery”.
It’s no wonder that, in an effort to render the adventures of these two over-privileged, husband-hunter aristos connected to the terribly strict mores of modern audiences, this adaptation focuses on their bonds of female friendship, even unshakable. under fire from new cadets.
For that, we have to thank Emily Mortimer, who directed, adapted and even played a part, as Fanny’s mother, aka The Bolter.
She hums like Mrs. Merton in a fascinator, and even has a cigarette holder to illustrate her jazzy decadence.
“Does the world really need another fancy dress drama about fancy people in a big house in England?” she wondered before starting work on Mitford’s beloved masterpiece.
Obviously, she decided this was exactly what we needed, despite it being the third time The Pursuit Of Love had been adapted for TV.
To spice things up, Mortimer seems to have asked everyone to situate his performances between feverish and utter hysterical, then rummaged nervously through the special effects box.
She created a frothy adaptation with a modern sparkle; complete with slow-motion footage, stills and a bold contemporary soundtrack starring Iggy Pop and New Order.
In this, she borrows a lot from films such as The Favorite (which starred Olivia Colman as Queen Anne) and Marie Antoinette’s concept version of Sofia Coppola, and even director Wes Anderson – but why not. ?
Cousin Fanny (Emily Beecham) (pictured with Lily James) is the Bridget Jones of the hour; Linda’s devoted columnist, narrator and timid Robin of the flamboyant Batman
Purists may disapprove, but here she manages to encapsulate much of the novel’s devious comedy, alongside the happiness and promise of youth that springs from its opening pages.
In one scene, Uncle Matthew’s eyes swell like golf balls (Non-U) as Linda waltzes with dashing Tony Kroesig (Freddie Fox) who not only has a German name (“ Hun! ”) But a quiff to boot.
“Who is this sewer dancing with Linda?” He blows. All of this makes us worry about the thrilling loving expectation of these pretty young girls, ill-equipped for the journey ahead.
This Pursuit is a delight for so many reasons, not least because it looks so gorgeous, brilliant in color and texture, from the pink walls in the hotel dining room, to the pom-pom wool on the sweater. Fair Isle from Linda to crepe paper party hats at Christmas, decorated with vintage perfect silver rickrack.
There are times when a coagulated camp atmosphere almost overwhelms, but what do you expect from a family that lives in a world of superlatives?
A highlight is Andrew Scott playing Lord Merlin (“ that depraved sewer ”) in polka-dot pajamas while dancing to T. Rex, or explaining to a bewildered Lady Radlett (Dolly Wells) why he dyes his pet pigeons in pastel. every year.
‘They love it. It makes them look pretty for each other, ”he observes. As Linda and the pigeons might tell, isn’t it lovely to be charming to us.