This latest -- and typical -- Thomas Hardy family drama to come to the screen is set in the Klondike, around the time of the gold rush. Through flashbacks, we learn that about twenty years previously, an unsuccessful gold digger had traded his wife and new-born daughter to another miner who had gold -- and a good claim -- but needed a woman more. Skip to the present, where wife and daughter arrive back in town to look up daddy, who is now King of the town and exceedingly wealthy. At the same time, the railroad engineers are in town, plotting the course of the coming railroad. Various romances and revelations ensue, as the broken family tries to reconcile while hiding the truth of what happened from the daughter.
Ian Douglas: I am starting to develop a dislike for Thomas Hardy's novels... they frequently explore the dark and tragic side of human life. This story features beautiful scenery showcasing a tragedy. The storyline may appeal more to women, it just did not grab me, although it does have some emotional appeal. Give it a try if your favourite critics like it.
Monica Venter: This is outstanding cinematography and a good portrayal of the 'railroaders', pioneers and gold diggers in their time and place frame. The storyline shows how people coped with the rugged terrain and the harsh living conditions of the time and how they dealt with their own mistakes and irresponsible decisions . All in all a splendid movie - and husband also enjoyed it.