At times delightfully madcap and laugh-out-loud funny, at times frustratingly self-conscious and even cruel, this period piece has charming moments. The Pursuit of Love successfully brings to life the swirling, passionate, political feeling of 1930's Europe, thanks in large part to the rollercoaster range of James, who plays Linda. Her obsession with the man of the moment, or her political cause-du-jour, feels as focused as it is fleeting. Foiled by her serious, loyal, and grounded cousin and friend Fanny, Linda finds herself "lost" without Fanny, that is, until the next man shows up.
Though "Fa," Linda's father, is played to comic effect by Dominic West, his words don't go unnoticed by the females in the household. His rants about the perils of educating women, insults about his niece's body, and his violent rages against his children, might rattle sensitive viewers. Also distracting is the contemporary music played in momentous scenes, jangling the historical vibe. Jump-cut edits and montages tend toward the heavy handed. The ending falls a little flat after so much noise, color, and culture. But the ensemble's performances -- Fanny's subtle eyebrow raises, Linda's over-the-top hot and cold tantrums, and The Bolter's wry comic jabs, can effectively delight viewers who overlook the boorish behaviors of the era. Fun, escapist fare exists in this series for viewers who want to delve into a story about the intricacies of female friendship.