By Tom Gliatto
January 29, 1996 12:00 PM

NBC (Sun., Feb. 4, 9 p.m. ET)

B

One emerges disoriented from this worthy, if fatiguing, four-hour adaptation of Jonathan Swift’s classic 1726 fantasy-satire about the adventures of Lemuel Gulliver, a decent but not overly perceptive surgeon. (The show is spread out over two nights.) Shipwrecked, Gulliver spends time among the tiny, belligerent Lilliputians; the giant, more peaceable Brobdingnagians; the brainy Laputans; and, strangest of all, the highly civilized but not especially likable society of horses, the Houyhnhnms. The special effects are lovely, and Ted Danson plays Gulliver with the right note of earnest naïveté. What comes through most strongly is Swift’s in-the-marrow revulsion at human (and even horsey) hypocrisy. Gulliver is being promoted as family entertainment, but parents should keep in mind that Swift isn’t Disney.

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