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Brideshead Revisited (2008)



Average Rating: 6.1/10
Reviews Counted: 128
Fresh: 80 | Rotten: 48

Suspenseful and beautifully mounted, Brideshead Revisited does an able job condensing Evelyn Waugh's novel.


Average Rating: 6.6/10
Critic Reviews: 39
Fresh: 29 | Rotten: 10

Suspenseful and beautifully mounted, Brideshead Revisited does an able job condensing Evelyn Waugh's novel.



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Average Rating: 3.2/5
User Ratings: 21,701

My Rating

Movie Info

"Brideshead Revisited" tells an evocative story of forbidden love and the loss of innocence set in the pre-WWII era. In the film, Charles Ryder becomes entranced with the noble Marchmain family, first through the charming and provocative Sebastian Flyte, and then his sophisticated sister, Julia. The rise and fall of Charles' infatuations reflect the decline of a decadent era in England between the wars.



Jeremy Brock, Andrew Davies

Jan 13, 2009


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All Critics (131) | Top Critics (39) | Fresh (80) | Rotten (48) | DVD (9)

Performances are good - Thompson and Gambon impress - but the insipid music is dreadful.

October 3, 2008 Full Review Source: Time Out
Time Out
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Thompson, though, is marvelous; with understated precision and grace, she makes every word count. Also excellent is Michael Gambon.

August 1, 2008 Full Review Source: Miami Herald
Miami Herald
Top Critic IconTop Critic

What's missing from Goode's performance and from the film as whole is the layer upon layer of accumulated motive -- the gradual evolution of a man's complex desires and even-more-complicated fears.

August 1, 2008 Full Review Source: Houston Chronicle | Comment (1)
Houston Chronicle
Top Critic IconTop Critic

If you're in the market for a veddy British drama and miss seeing Emma Thompson in her natural environment, Brideshead Revisited is a worthwhile two-hour meditation on faith (and the lack thereof).

July 31, 2008 Full Review Source: Arizona Republic
Arizona Republic
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Yes, it's a compressed version, but I found it very enjoyable.

July 28, 2008
Ebert & Roeper
Top Critic IconTop Critic

If it's a choice between the movie's 135 minutes or the 659 minutes of the miniseries, I'd say it's no choice at all. The shorter version is the one that seems long.

July 25, 2008 Full Review Source: Wall Street Journal
Wall Street Journal
Top Critic IconTop Critic


August 26, 2009 Full Review Source: Slant Magazine | Comment (1)
Slant Magazine

A bleak and often befuddling 2-hour-15-minute disappointment.

August 14, 2009 Full Review Source: Times-Picayune | Comment (1)

slow and beautiful, rather than intense, dramatic and insightful

April 4, 2009 Full Review Source: Screenwize

it still has the high-class dramatic feel you'd expect from something you would have watched on PBS twenty years ago

March 5, 2009 Full Review Source: 7M Pictures
7M Pictures

Occasionally interesting, always beautiful and regularly tedious, the film attempts to capture a time and a feeling yet it ultimately fails to provide the depth needed to make it wholly successful.

January 25, 2009 Full Review Source: Movie Views

Certainly passable, but less than spectacular, Brideshead Revisited is an authentic and decent adaptation of a well-known novel, but nothing more.

January 7, 2009 Full Review Source: Apollo Guide
Apollo Guide

The events in the film felt rushed and overly obvious, as if Harry Potter's adopted parents dressed him in an "Ask me about wizardry" t-shirt before Hagrid ever turned up.

November 9, 2008 Full Review Source: Cinerina

Those with warm memories of the BBC television serial in the 1980s will find much in this Brideshead to enjoy.

October 31, 2008 Full Review Source: The Australian
The Australian

Even if the material is familiar, even if it has been done well before, there is room in a great book for a new interpretation.

October 31, 2008 Full Review Source: Sydney Morning Herald
Sydney Morning Herald

It's as if Waugh's story has been filtered through the spiritual blindness of young Charles. The movie sees, but it doesn't understand.

October 29, 2008 Full Review Source: Decent Films Guide | Comment (1)
Decent Films Guide

With all its failings, this is an intelligent, critical film about religious faith, and that in itself is a rare achievement.

October 24, 2008 Full Review Source: MovieTime, ABC Radio National
MovieTime, ABC Radio National

The look and feel is just about right, and the dialogue and acting are enjoyably sharp. This new version of the classic deserves a fair hearing in its own right.

October 24, 2008 Full Review Source: FILMINK (Australia)
FILMINK (Australia)

A timely update on a deserving classic.

October 24, 2008 Full Review Source: Daily Telegraph (Australia)
Daily Telegraph (Australia)

Directed by Julian Jarrold from a script by Andrew Davies and Jeremy Brock, this new adaptation adroitly condenses Waugh's plot while eliminating or reversing most of his intended meanings.

October 24, 2008 Full Review Source: The Age (Australia)
The Age (Australia)

At just over two hours, the film naturally feels a bit cramped and the most interesting elements are given fairly short shrift.

October 24, 2008 Full Review Source: At the Movies (Australia)
At the Movies (Australia)

Evelyn Waugh's greatest novel gets a respectable new film treatment from a team of Britain 's biggest names, although it will inevitably remain in the shadow of the 1981 TV series.

October 18, 2008 Full Review Source: Screen International
Screen International

Thompson's work is especially dazzling because the mean, sanctimonious character is so clearly alien to the actress.

October 18, 2008 Full Review Source: Entertainment Insiders
Entertainment Insiders

Characters have been left out -- certainly inevitable -- but mainly what this lacks is air to breathe, wit, humor, a lightness of touch to keep it from being the stodgy bore it is.

October 18, 2008 Full Review Source: San Diego Metropolitan
San Diego Metropolitan

This revisiting of Evelyn Waugh's novel is successful in part in that it firmly envelops both its characters and us into a cloud of Catholic claustrophobia. But Julian Jarrold's film is so plodding and overlong, that by the time it reaches its resolution,

October 17, 2008 Full Review Source: Urban Cinefile
Urban Cinefile

This glorified soap opera, filled with a higher caste of desperate souls, makes Brideshead worth the revisit.

October 13, 2008 Full Review Source: Paste Magazine
Paste Magazine

Audience Reviews for Brideshead Revisited

Not spectacular, but an interesting drama with good performances and a strong story about family, religion and faith that may leave you thinking about it long after the film is over.
May 11, 2010

Super Reviewer

Dull, slow moving but visually beautiful. Uncharismatic leads are blown off the screen whenever Emma Thompson is on, displaying her range by playing a markedly different character than usual and as always doing it masterfully. Once she's gone from the scene its just pretty pictures with people you neither really like or care about.
April 17, 2010
jay nixon

Super Reviewer

Gruesome Hatchet Job of My Favourite Novel. "Utterly Macarbe".
December 29, 2009

Super Reviewer

Brideshead Revisited is a lovely period piece drama set in 1920's UK. The very talented actress Emma Thopmson palys the matriarch of a very wealthy family whom owns Brideshead. A young msn named Chrales Ryder becomes friends with the son of this family and quickly gets entangled in the intrique of this family and home. This movie is worthy of seeing. A very well suited cast and well done by all.
February 26, 2009
Mason Williams

Super Reviewer

    1. Sebastian Flyte: I should like to bury something precious, in every place I've been happy. And then when I was old, and ugly and miserable, I could come back, and dig it up, and remember.
    – Submitted by Rocío R (2 years ago)
View all quotes (1)

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