Based on the novel of the same title by Sarah Waters, the three-part BBC production of Tipping the Velvet brings the lesbian underground of Victorian England to vivid and moving life. Eighteen-year-old Nancy Astley is an oyster girl in search of herself and and the deeper truths of love. We follow Nan's adventures through the 1880's London Music Hall scene, decadent sapphist lairs of the lesbian elite, bitter back alleys, and the warm homelife of early labour movement organizers. With a screenplay by Andrew Davies (of Bridget Jones's Diary fame), viewers are swept away into a world of lush life, harsh realities and passionate tenderness.
This DVD was originally sent to me by a friend in Wales, and came highly recommended. I was thoroughly impressed by the vibrant artistic direction and innovative camera and editing work. Every element in this piece is superb and comes together flawlessly. Tipping the Velvet also contains some of the most sensual and profound lovemaking scenes I've seen since watching March of the Penguins. Odd, perhaps... but there it is. I was delighted and proud to discover that our library owns a copy of this beautifully told story of strength and the redeeming power of love.