Restless (2012 miniseries)

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Restless
Genre Drama
Written by William Boyd
Directed by Edward Hall
Starring
Composer(s) Lorne Balfe
Original language(s) English
No. of episodes 2
Production
Producer(s)
  • Hilary Bevan Jones
  • Paul Frift
Running time 90 minutes
Production company(s) Endor Productions
Release
Original channel BBC One
Original release 27 December 2012 (2012-12-27) – 28 December 2012 (2012-12-28)

Restless is a 2012 British TV adaptation of William Boyd's espionage novel Restless (2006). Directed by Edward Hall, the film features Hayley Atwell, Rufus Sewell, Michelle Dockery, Michael Gambon and Charlotte Rampling. The two parts first aired on 27 and 28 December 2012 on BBC One.

Plot[edit]

Part One[edit]

The first episode opens in the 1970s with Ruth Gilmartin, a PhD student at St Johns College Cambridge, driving with her young son to visit her mother in her country cottage. When she arrives her mother, Sally Gilmartin, is nervous and believes that men are watching her from the nearby woods. Ruth mocks her mother's fears. Sally then hands her a notebook with the name "Eva Delectorskaya" on the front, and informs her daughter that this is her real name.

The action then moves to Paris in 1939. Eva, as a young woman, is shown with her brother. The family has recently arrived in Paris from their native Russia. After leaving Eva, her brother is kicked to death in the street by a gang of men. After the funeral, Eva is approached by an Englishman whom she had earlier seen talking to her brother. He introduces himself as Lucas Romer and gives Eva a business card for the company "AAS Ltd".

Later Eva returns to the flat she shares with her father and finds Lucas there. Lucas tells her that he is a British spy and her brother was working for him. He tells Eva that war is imminent and that he wants her to become a spy like her brother. Eva is initially reluctant but then agrees. She is taken to Scotland for training at a country house, where she proves herself extremely capable at memory tests and a survival exercise.

During this period war breaks out. After her training Lucas tells her that they will be working in Belgium. In Ostend Eva is part of a team fabricating fake news stories to be picked up by the Germans. She is then selected to observe an operation in the fictitious Dutch border town of Preslo, the operation goes wrong and results in the death of a Dutch Intelligence Officer and the capture of SIS officers by the German Sicherheitsdienst (SD-Security Service), this was based on the true events of the Venlo Incident.

Part Two[edit]

Eva is sent to America to seduce the married Mason Harding, an adviser to the president, to find out if the Americans intend joining the war, a mission she successfully accomplishes. However a second assignment is to supply a map to American agents supposedly outlining a planned German invasion of the States but Eva spots errors in the map, informing her spy master and lover Lucas Romer and other colleagues. Though the map fools the president Eva survives an attempt to kill her and, as her fellow spies die one by one, is convinced she was betrayed. She gets Ruth to contact Romer, posing as a journalist interested in wartime espionage, which allows 'Sally' to follow and locate Romer's home address. The two women pay him a visit and the identity of the traitor is revealed after more than thirty years.

Cast[edit]

Production[edit]

The drama was produced by Endor Productions in association with Sundance Channel. It was directed by Edward Hall, and produced by Hilary Bevan Jones and Paul Frift.[1]

The exterior of the club, "Brydges", frequented by Lord Romer, was filmed at Bearwood College in Berkshire.

Reception[edit]

Adrian Michaels, writing for The Daily Telegraph, praised the first part of the adaptation as "terrific", saying: "There was enough plot development to keep everything ticking along, but at an easy pace that was a welcome change from Scandinavian psychopaths starting a bloodbath every 15 minutes."[2] The first part was also received well by John Crace in The Guardian; he commented on the high production values and compared it another series featuring Dockery, saying it "was everything [Downton Abbey] isn't: well-acted, well-written, well-paced and well-filmed".[3]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Hayley Atwell, Rufus Sewell, Michelle Dockery, Michael Gambon and Charlotte Rampling to star in BBC One's adaptation of William Boyd's Restless". BBC Press Office. 25 June 2012. Retrieved 6 January 2013. 
  2. ^ Michaels, Adrian (28 December 2012). "Restless, BBC One, review". The Telegraph. Retrieved 6 January 2013. 
  3. ^ Crace, John (27 December 2012). "TV review: Restless; The World's Most Dangerous Roads; Restoration Man". The Guardian. Retrieved 6 January 2013. 

External links[edit]