Affinity is my favorite of all Waters' novels and I just loved this film adaptation. It stars Anna Madeley - who you may have seen in the latest adaptations of Sense and Sensibility and Brideshead Revisted - as Margaret Prior and Zoe Tapper as Selina Dawes.
Set in 1870s, Prior, an unmarried woman of an upper class family in England, has lost her father and set outs to become a 'lady visitor' of the local women's prison to fill the time. One of the prisoners she meets there is Selina Dawes, a spiritualist, who was convicted of assault on a young lady during a spiritualist session gone wrong. Prior is instantly captivated by Dawes and sets her focus mostly on her.
The film stayed pretty close to the book. It added a character that wasn't present in the novel: Theophilus, who is trying to seek Margaret's hand in marriage. The relationship between Margaret and Selina is reflected on screen as intensely as it does on the page. The transition was flawless. And the costumes, if I may be superficial for a moment, were absolutely gorgeous. I couldn't help but drool over the pretty, pretty dresses.
Affinity is a wonder Victorian costume drama. Anyone who loves the book won't be disappointed, and anyone who hasn't read the book will be blown away by the ending!