As even the least-observant visitor to TPV has noticed, PG has been on a video spree. He promises this will not continue, but he will post a handful of additional book-related videos he has discovered during his brief video journey.
The following 8-minute documentary is titled Turned Pages.
1949 marks the beginning of the nineteen year (1949 to 1968) unconventional and long distance love affair between Helene Hanff (Anne Bancroft) and Frank P. Doel (Sir Anthony Hopkins). Straightforward Helene is an aspiring New York City-based writer who works as a script editor. She is a voracious reader, especially of non-fiction. Frank is the efficient and knowledgeable head clerk at Marks & Co., a second-hand bookstore located at 84 Charing Cross Road in London. Unable to find the out of print books she wants at New York City bookstores without having to pay an arm and a leg, which she can’t afford, she writes to Marks & Co. hoping they can fill her order at reasonable prices. Frank and the bookstore staff are able to provide Helene most of what she wants at more than reasonable prices including shipping. As such, she provides them with standing orders for more and more books. But as time goes on, their correspondence not only deals with Helene’s orders, but what is happening in their lives and in the world around them, Frank’s, which includes his loving marriage to his wife Nora (Dame Judi Dench) and their two children. Helene dreams one day of being able to travel to London to meet Frank and the other Marks & Co. staff, the people who have been able to fulfill a great need in her life.
Isabelle (Amy Irving) is a young independent woman who works in a bookstore. She meets regularly with her friends, and often goes to visit and spends time with her Jewish grandmother (wonderfully played by Reizl Bozyk), or bubbie as she calls her, who thinks its sad that she doesn’t have a man in her life. Trying to do something about that, her grandmother hires a marriage broker, and Isabelle ends up getting fixed up with a guy who sells pickles, Sam Posner (Peter Riegert). Isabelle is not very happy about it to begin with, since she is interested in the writer Anton Maes (Jeroen Krabbé), who does readings at the bookstore she works in. She is not very interested in Sam to begin with, and declines his offer to take her out when they meet for the first time at her grandmothers apartment. Sam is very persistent though, and Isabelle starts to warm up to him slowly as he woos his way into her heart. Still being very interested in Anton Maes, she fixes Sam up with her best friend Ricky. A good idea to begin with, but as Isabelle starts to like Sam more and more and discovers that maybe Anton Maes isn’t that great, she starts spending more time with Sam.
England, 1959. Free-spirited widow Florence Green (Emily Mortimer) risks everything to open a bookshop in a conservative East Anglian coastal town. While bringing about a surprising cultural awakening through works by Ray Bradbury and Vladimir Nabokov, she earns the polite but ruthless opposition of a local grand dame (Patricia Clarkson) and the support and affection of a reclusive book loving widower (Bill Nighy). As Florence’s obstacles amass and bear suspicious signs of a local power struggle, she is forced to ask: is there a place for a bookshop in a town that may not want one? Based on Penelope Fitzgerald’s acclaimed novel and directed by Isabel Coixet (Learning to Drive), The Bookshop is an elegant yet incisive rendering of personal resolve, tested in the battle for the soul of a community.
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