Wolf Hall charts Thomas Cromwell’s remarkable rise in the Tudor court
Critics have called the BBC adaptation of Hilary Mantel’s Booker-winning novels “close to perfect television”.
The six-part adaptation combines both Wolf Hall and Bringing Up The Bodies.
Experts were almost unanimous in their view the hotly anticipated BBC Two series was “event television” of the highest calibre.
There was praise for leading cast members, particularly Jonathan Pryce as Cardinal Wolsley and Mark Rylance as protagonist Thomas Cromwell.
“This is event television, sumptuous, intelligent, and serious, meticulous in detail but not humourless or po-face,” wrote Sam Wollaston in the Guardian.
Three Card Trick, the first of six one-hour episodes, drew an average audience of 3.9 million, though it was easily eclipsed by ITV’s National Television Awards.
Pryce was described as “marvellously humane” and “smoothly acidic”, while Damian Lewis – as Henry VIII – was admired for his “heaps of kingly swagger” and “fearsome” portrayal of “a man with no doubt about his divine right to rule”.
Claire Foy plays Anne Boleyn – a central player in both novels.
But the highest praise was reserved for Rylance, as the enigmatic Cromwell – who goes from blacksmith’s son to the king’s right-hand man.
“For those not blessed enough to have caught Mark Rylance on stage – he’s been absent from British theatre since 2013 – this was a rare(ish) chance to catch one of Britain’s finest actors on the screen,” wrote Will Dean in the Independent.
“Mark Rylance’s eyes glistening with sadness and acuity produce a Bafta-winning performance by themselves,” wrote The Times’s Andrew Billen.
Wollaston echoed that “behind the steel the sadness in his eyes is almost unbearable to watch”.
Jonathan Pryce plays Cardinal Wolsey, Cromwell’s earliest mentor and protector
There was praise …read more
Source:: BBC Entertainment