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DCA Archive

Far From the Madding Crowd

Headstrong and independent, Bathsheba Everdene is among the most modern of 19th century heroines and Julie Christie’s performance beautifully underlines her as a woman at odds with the conventions of the time.

Bathsheba unexpectedly inherits a large farm in rural Dorset. Struggling to manage it herself, she captivates the hearts and minds of three very different men: an honest and hardworking sheep farmer, a wealthy but tortured landowner, and a reckless and violent swordsman. As emotions become entangled, free-spirited and innocent folly soon leads to devastating tragedy.

The film contains a number of stand-out set-pieces, but what resonates so deeply is the way in which director John Schlesinger and cinematographer Nicolas Roeg frame the passions and tragedy at the film's heart against the patterns of rural life and the harsh, sodden beauty of the Dorset landscape.