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      The Black Velvet Gown

      1991 1h 43m Drama List
      Reviews 62% Audience Score 250+ Ratings Literacy burdens a miner's widow (Janet McTeer) and children in 1830s northern England. Read More Read Less Watch on Prime Video Stream Now

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      The Black Velvet Gown

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      Critics Reviews

      View All (1) Critics Reviews
      Tony Scott Variety The actors are first class as they interpret what's there; trouble is that what's there - the story - becomes almost a parody of earlier, sturdier Masterpiece Theatre fare. Feb 15, 2018 Full Review Read all reviews

      Audience Reviews

      View All (4) audience reviews
      joe m "The Black Velvet Gown" is a film that resides in the middle place of not being quite as biting as the likes of "Gosford Park" and not quite as sentimental as movies based on the works of Dickens. It's a decently done story of the widow Millican (McTeer) and her three children, particularly her daughter Biddy (Somerville), as they lead a lower class struggle amongst the gentry in 1830's rural England. Their hardships are relayed realistically, yet then there are quite a few bits of luck and circumstances that only happen in the movie, to help them along. While the plot is by the numbers, the sets and the acting all pull together for an engaging film. Rated 3.5 out of 5 stars 03/30/23 Full Review Audience Member Loved it! Not usually a fan of romances (it's not a romance, but in part) and generally hate "romcom". This is a classic, Romeo, Juliette, Cinderella (Pygmalion, which sickens me - you're a statue - you don't even exist!) story (but much more) that lives in the real history of the treatment of the "halves and the have nots" and how our society actually evolved. "How dare you be poor and properly, classically educated . . ." Definitely will watch this again - looking for the book. Rated 5 out of 5 stars 01/14/23 Full Review Audience Member This movie really has two stories in one: first is the story of the widow with her three children searching for a place after being left peniless and alone; second is the story of one of the children growing up into a young woman and finding her own place in the world - the latter being the one I found most interesting. Biddy is a girl who is really too clever to be working as a servant, and too proud to hide it and act 'her place'. In those times, servants were not expected to be able to sign their own names, let alone read poetry and stories the way Biddy does, and boy does it get her into trouble. Biddy makes an excellent protagonist and heroine: she is clever but too proud to hide it; she is a servant but is unwilling to be told what to think; pretty but too cynical to welcome male attention; has no power yet stands up to injustice all the same. Overall, it was a movie I thoroughly enjoyed watching and one of the more optimistic of the Catherine Cookson series of films. Rated 4 out of 5 stars 01/16/23 Full Review Audience Member It was really close to the book, Rated 3.5 out of 5 stars 01/27/23 Full Review Read all reviews
      The Black Velvet Gown

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      Cast & Crew

      Movie Info

      Synopsis Literacy burdens a miner's widow (Janet McTeer) and children in 1830s northern England.
      Director
      Norman Stone
      Producer
      Ray Marshall
      Production Co
      Tyne Tees Television
      Genre
      Drama
      Original Language
      English
      Release Date (Streaming)
      Nov 22, 2019
      Runtime
      1h 43m
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