But Ken Russell is actually a director with many facets, and Russell's interest in DH Lawrence goes back to at least 1969 when he made what is still the best DH Lawrence adaptation on film, WOMEN IN LOVE (starring Glenda Jackson, Oliver Reed & Alan Bates).
He then followed that up twenties years later with THE RAINBOW (starring Amanda Donohoe, and Sammie Davis).
DH Lawrence is actually very wordy for one who claims to be interested in the body more than in the mind but Ken Russell has found a visual shorthand for delivering those Lawrentian themes with nice visuals. The most sensual acting is done by Joely Richarson when in her private chambers.
Irreverent and Sensual Adaptation of an Irreverent and Sensual Classic This BBC miniseries has a well earned reputation as being much looser and freer with its literary souce (here the source material is not just one work but several works of DH Lawrence)than most literary adaptations for English television.
But this one is by far the most sensual of the three and that is largely due to the fact that Joely Richardson seems to be the very embodiment of sensual awakening; the actress seems as willing as her character to simply follow the dictates of the body regardless of social norms.
Its always a big deal when a high profile actress (especially one with the lineage of Joely Richardson) sheds her clothes on screen, but to do so on British televison for all to see takes more than a little boldness.
But of course that never works and soon they are intimates thoroughly engaged with each other, body and mind, and running naked through the rainy glades and meadows; then sitting nake dbefore a fire and pretending to be Lady Jane and John Thomas.
Their "understanding" involves a mutual appreciation of nature, and a mutual loathing of Lord Clifford and the upper-class privileges that he defends as birthrights.