Review of "Masterpiece: Durrells in Corfu" From The TV MegaSite

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Masterpiece: Durrells in Corfu DVD cover


Masterpiece: Durrells in Corfu

 Review by Suzanne Lanoue 11/1/16

This is a wonderful show, as I said in my previous review of its airing on PBS. Buy this if you missed it on PBS, or even if you just want it in your collection. Or give it as a gift. It's a brilliant show with amazing characters.

Based on an autobiography, it's about an unusual British family that moves to a Greek island in the 30's. I can't imagine anyone not enjoying this series.

There are three features on the DVD. I enjoyed them, too. The actors and others discuss the show and how it was made. One is "Behind the Scenes," one is "The Adaptation," and one is "Who Are The Durrells?"  This last one discusses the various characters.  Enjoy!






Click Here for a Preview of the Program

Starring Keeley Hawes (Upstairs Downstairs, Wives and Daughters)

Available on DVD and Blu-ray from PBS Distribution November 1

Airs Sundays on MASTERPIECE October 16 – November 20 (check local listings)

Arlington, Va.September 13, 2016 – PBS Distribution announced today it will be releasing “MASTERPIECE: THE DURRELLS IN CORFU” on DVD and Blu-ray. Keeley Hawes (Upstairs Downstairs, Wives and Daughters) stars as an intrepid widow who decamps from dreary 1930s England to a sun-dappled Greek island with her four recalcitrant children, ages 11 to 21, in this adaptation of Gerald Durrell’s My Family and Other Animals and its two sequels.

THE DURRELLS IN CORFU” will be available on DVD and Blu-ray November 1, 2016. The run time of the program is approximately 292 minutes on 2 discs. The DVD SRP is $39.99 and the Blu-ray SRP is $49.99. The program will also be available for digital download.

Co-starring with Hawes, who plays Louisa Durrell, are Josh O'Connor (Florence Foster Jenkins) as her eldest son, Larry, the instigator of the family’s sudden move to Corfu and a budding writer on his way to becoming the famous novelist Lawrence Durrell; newcomer Callum Woodhouse as son number two, Leslie, an impulsive firearms enthusiast; Daisy Waterstone (Cyberbully) as daughter Margo, sixteen and man-crazy; and Milo Parker (Mr. Holmes) as eleven-year-old Gerry, who only has eyes for wildlife and grew up to be a world-renowned naturalist.

Also appearing are Alexis Georgoulis (My Life in Ruins) as Spiros, a Greek taxi driver and all-around fixer for the disoriented Durrells; Yorgos Karamihos (Ben-Hur) as Dr. Theo Stephanides, Gerry’s zoological soulmate; and Ulric von der Esch (183 Days) as Sven, a handsome Swedish expat, living his own bucolic fantasy on Corfu, into which he entangles Louisa.

A tight budget and desperation—not holiday-making—originally drive the Durrells to sink their meager savings into boat fare to Corfu, where they hope to find a refuge more welcoming for their unconventional ways than the stuffy UK. They arrive on an island with no beach resorts, night clubs, tourist shops, or even electricity—for this is 1935. What Corfu does have is endless opportunity for living, loving, shooting, and animal collecting—depending on your preferences.

Gerald Durrell drew on (and embellished) the family’s real-life adventures to create three bestsellers: My Family and Other Animals (published in 1956), Birds, Beasts, and Relatives (1969), and Fauna and Family (1978).

These serve as inspiration for “THE DURRELLS IN CORFU” screenwriter, Simon Nye (Men Behaving Badly, MASTERPIECE’s My Family and Other Animals), whose adaptation has a bit of the epic quality of Greek myth: There’s Gerry’s enchantment with the marvelous animals that populate the island; Margo and Leslie’s quest to cast a spell on members of the opposite sex; Larry’s titanic struggle to produce a novel that someone will publish; and Louisa’s futile stratagems to force her children to get jobs.

But the central odyssey is the children’s search for a suitable mate for their lovelorn mom. Of course, success hinges on whether mother and offspring can agree on what constitutes “suitable.”

THE DURRELLS IN CORFU is a Sid Gentle Films Ltd/MASTERPIECE coproduction, based on the Corfu Trilogy by Gerald Durrell. It is written by Simon Nye, directed by Steve Barron and Roger Goldby and produced by Christopher Hall. The executive producers are Sally Woodward Gentle, Lee Morris, and Simon Nye for Sid Gentle Films Ltd and Rebecca Eaton for MASTERPIECE on PBS.


The top-rated primetime show on PBS, MASTERPIECE is celebrating its 45th anniversary in 2016. MASTERPIECE is presented on PBS by WGBH Boston. Rebecca Eaton is executive producer. Funding for the series is provided by Viking River Cruises and POM Wonderful with additional support from public television viewers and contributors to The MASTERPIECE Trust. MASTERPIECE is known for presenting iconic shows such as Upstairs Downstairs, Prime Suspect, The Forsyte Saga, Poldark, Sherlock and Downton Abbey.

About PBS Distribution

PBS Distribution is the leading media distributor for the public television community, both domestically and internationally, extending the reach of these programs beyond broadcast while generating revenue for the public television system, stations, and producers.

PBS Distribution offers a broad range of high quality content in multiple formats including DVD, Blu-ray, digital download, and digital streaming.  PBS International offers factual content for broadcast, cable, and satellite services internationally.  The PBS Distribution catalog includes films from Ken Burns, documentaries from award-winning series such as NOVA, FRONTLINE, AMERICAN MASTERS, NATURE, and AMERICAN EXPERIENCE, dramas from MASTERPIECE, as well as films from independent producers and popular children’s programming.


Street Date: November 1, 2016

Genre: Drama

Run Time: Approx. 292 Minutes on 2 Discs

SRP: DVD $39.99, Blu-ray $49.99

Format: DVD & Blu-ray

Proofread and Edited by Brenda

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Page updated 11/12/16

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