Friday, June 23, 2006

The Line of Beauty

The Line of Beauty is a bbc mini-series set in the 1980's, telling the story of Nick, a young Oxford graduate who settles into the home of one of his classmates, Toby, and Toby's family. Toby's father is a Tory MP who hopes every time he throws a party that "The Lady" (Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher) will make an appearance. Nick accompanies the family on vacations in a French villa; attends dinner parties with the rich, the very rich, and the powerfully rich; and takes care of Toby's sister. However, Nick eventually learns that nothing — his position in the family included — is as secure as it appears.

Line is another in the long string of beautiful, wonderful, rich and compelling mini-series to come from the BBC. Three hours is a long stretch in a movie theatre with only two brief intermissions, but the story draws you in so completely that you hardly notice the time. If you can find it on DVD, so much the better. Seek out this series, find it, and watch it. For that matter, keep an eye out for anything else with Dan Stevens, the newcomer who stars in the central role of Nick Guest.

The Line of Beauty, dir. Saul Dibb, 2006 UK, 3 × 60 min., based on the novel by Alan Hollinghurst

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