Fortunes of War (1987) 2 x DVD9
Based on Olivia Manning's six novels comprising The Balkan Trilogy and The Levant Trilogy, which Anthony Burgess once wrote was possibly "the finest record (of World War II) produced by a British writer", Fortunes of War tells the story of the war's effect on a small group of British citizens. At the centre of the tale is a newly married couple, Guy and Harriet Pringle, played by Kenneth Branagh and Emma Thompson, as they are caught in the terrifying aftermath of Hitler's advance across the eastern front. The story is almost biographical in its reflection of Manning's own true-life experiences as she accompanied her husband to Bucharest before the War and then fled the advancing Nazis to Greece, Egypt, and eventually Jerusalem.

As the tale opens, Guy and Harriet have arrived in Bucharest, having travelled there by the Orient Express, to stay in the Hotel Athenee Palace, where Guy's friends, all expatriates gather in the English bar. Guy has come here to take up a lecturers job and it soon becomes apparent that he is totally wrapped up in his work, to the detriment of his relationship with Harriet. He is also a liberal idealist who, although aware of Germany's invasion of Poland, believes the goodwill of the Russians will be enough to hold off the Nazis. However, as the conflict deepens and Romania turns fascist, the Pringles, and their group of friends, are forced to flee...

This drama was originally broadcast on the BBC as a television miniseries.


Director: James Cellan Jones
Cast: Emma Thompson, Kenneth Branagh, Charles Kay, Ronald Pickup, Alan Bennett
Country: UK
Genre: Drama, War

2 x DVD9 | NTSC 4:3 | 03:49:40 + 02:52:56 | 7.52 Gb + 7.52 Gb + 3% rec
Language: English
Subtitles: None

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