DVD Verdict
Home About News Blu-ray DVD Reviews Upcoming DVD Releases Contest Podcasts Forums Judges Contact  

Case Number 18652: Small Claims Court

Buy A Voyage Round My Father at Amazon

A Voyage Round My Father

Acorn Media // 1982 // 80 Minutes // Not Rated
Reviewed by Judge Roy Hrab (Retired) // April 2nd, 2010

• View Judge Hrab's Dossier
• E-mail Judge Hrab
• Printer Friendly Review


Every purchase you make through these Amazon links supports DVD Verdict's reviewing efforts. Thank you!




 

All Rise...

Judge Roy Hrab is the type of person that likes to voyage round.

The Charge

John Mortimer: Don't be angry.
Clifford Mortimer: I'm always angry! When I'm dying…

The Case

A Voyage Round My Father is a British production by Thames Television of high pedigree. It stars the late acting titans Laurence Olivier (Spartacus) and Alan Bates (Gosford Park). It was written by the late John Mortimer, creator of Rumpole Of The Bailey, adapting his own autobiographical play for the film.

Unfortunately, the result falls far below the potential.

The story follows the relationship between John Mortimer (Bates) and his blind father, Clifford (Olivier) from John's youth to his father's death about thirty years later. It is standard fare about a son trying to live up to his father's expectations while at the same time seeking to set-off on his own. In this case, John, at the behest of this father, follows the old man into practicing law. However, the son really wants to be a writer, which he becomes eventually.

The play doesn't translate to the screen very well. The thirty odd years of action take place over a short 80 minute run time. Most of it takes place at the family home. These slice of life sketches would work on the stage where the words take precedence, but they don't cohere into anything solid here. The garden and pastoral settings surrounding the Mortimer estate are unnecessary distractions. Further, the play doesn't contain much in the way of kinetic action that would lend itself to a cinematic presentation. And so, the film plods along until it ends with little intensity until, perhaps, the final scene.

The performances are functional. Olivier makes for a good cranky old man and Bates is believable as the dutiful son, but both actors have far superior showings elsewhere in their respective bodies of work.

The audio presentation is fine. All you need to hear is the dialogue and it comes across without any problems. The video is less than ideal. Scratches and grain are present throughout and the colors are on the dull side.

The minimal extras on the DVD are text biographies of Bates, Mortimer, and Olivier.

This is a feeble effort with only the combination of Bates and Olivier as a drawing point. However, if seeing this duo together on screen is something that appeals to you be aware that A Voyage Round My Father is more comparable to Righteous Kill than it is to Heat.

The Verdict

Guilty.

Give us your feedback!

Did we give A Voyage Round My Father a fair trial? yes / no

Share This Review


Follow DVD Verdict


Other Reviews You Might Enjoy

• A River Runs Through It
• Conversation Piece
• Clover
• Warm Springs

DVD Reviews Quick Index

• DVD Releases
• Recent DVD Reviews
• Search for a DVD review...

Scales of Justice

Judgment: 65

Perp Profile

Studio: Acorn Media
Video Formats:
• Full Frame
Audio Formats:
• Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo (English)
Subtitles:
• English (SDH)
Running Time: 80 Minutes
Release Year: 1982
MPAA Rating: Not Rated
Genres:
• Drama
• Foreign
• Television

Distinguishing Marks

• Biographies

Accomplices

• IMDb








DVD | Blu-ray | Upcoming DVD Releases | About | Staff | Jobs | Contact | Subscribe | Find us on Google+ | Privacy Policy

Review content copyright © 2010 Roy Hrab; Site design and review layout copyright © 2014 Verdict Partners LLC. All rights reserved.