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Pride & Prejudice: your favorite version?

Discussion in 'Off The Beaten Track' started by manleywoman, May 23, 2012.

  1. Quintuple

    Quintuple papillon d'amour


    I'm so glad there are so many others here who've watched the BBC version over and over.

    I'm one of those people who get ultra-frustrated at moronic characters in fiction, even though it's fiction. I could not stand the BBC Mrs. Bennett, or Mr. Collins, but I understand that they're just ridiculous.

    But I must say, to this day, I randomly spit out scenes from this version. Mary singing her song at the party. Lizzie singing that Henry Purcell song. "A friend in need is a friend in deed!" "Ooh, the soldiers!"

    I only saw the 2005 movie in the theaters and did not like it.

    The other monstrous BBC mini-series that's ultra frustrating but addictive is Bleak House. I'm starting Little Dorritt from the library this week. I absolutely loved the recent BBC version of Emma.
  2. Holley Calmes

    Holley Calmes Well-Known Member

    Add me to the list of those who can't get enough of the 1995 BBC version! It was as close to perfection for me as I could get. I study the Regency (on a hobbiest level) because of my lifelong interest in some characters of history...and this version seemed to me to be the closest in feel, and let's face it-Firth IS DARCY. That pitiful boy in the 2005 version wasn't man enough. Sorry. I did like Rintoul though. And Kera Knightly was just dreadful IMHO. She's just too contemporary, and she's always Kera Knightly. I'm Kera! Watch me emote!

    If you want a feel for the Regency period, here is a delightful, witty, naughty and very intelligent site. Might skew often a bit early for P&P, but it covers items into the early 19th century as well. I particularly love the "Tart of the Week" section! :lol:


    I also loved Thompson's S&S and watch it often. I love the score. I love kate Winslet in it-I thought she got it right. And I don't blame her for loving Willoughby. Some Austen scholar friends of mine in Australia have suggested that Willoughby was inspired by one of my favorite historical figures, Banastre Tarleton. During the period from about 1785-1800, Tarleton had a long affair with actress and early feminist writer Mary Robinson, who was about the essence of "Sensibility." He dumped her for a rich 23 year old whome he married and lived happily ever after with, the dog. Not a perfect fit, but the story was very much a part of the times and highly publicized. You might also remember Tarleton from the dreadfully historically incorrect "The Patriot" (the bad dude Tavington-great job but nothing like the real person) and Cirian Hinds in the recent movie about Wilberforce (Can't remember the name-didn't see it.) But from what I've read, it was also another totally incorrect portrayal of a delightful Regency rake. I love Hinds though! Loved him as Julius Caesar!
  3. AYS

    AYS I'd rather have a pug for my president

    I loved this! I only ever saw it the once, I should look for it.
  4. ioana

    ioana Well-Known Member

    I never watched her much with Northam and Ewan McGregor on the screen. I suppose having a main character that's easy to tune out is not exacty the mark of a stellar performance, but at least she didn't annoy me as much as usual :p.

    And, Toni Collette is brilliant in pretty much anything she does, including Harriet, so they can go ahead and plagiarize her interpretation. I thought it worked well with their new adaptation.
  5. IceAlisa

    IceAlisa discriminating and persnickety ballet aficionado

    Here's some (unwelcome to me) news about Keira Knightly--she will be playing Anna Karenina. I just don't see her having

    (a) the depth of acting talent to do the role justice
    (b) looking and acting appropriate not only for a different period but also a very different country.

    She is just not well-suited for period films, yet she insists on making them.
  6. PDilemma

    PDilemma Well-Known Member


    As someone basically put it upthread...See Keira Emote.

    So many good actresses. Why would they cast her?
  7. IceAlisa

    IceAlisa discriminating and persnickety ballet aficionado

    I know. Ridiculous. May be Baz Luhrmann is directing it once he is done mauling The Great Gatsby.
  8. Artemis@BC

    Artemis@BC Well-Known Member

    Oh dear, that is bad news. And a big fat :confused: Though of course the reason why they cast her is obvious -- they think she's a draw. Probably won't draw me though!

    To be fair, when the part is in her wheelhouse, Keira can do a decent job. I quite liked her in Bend it Like Beckham, Love Actually, and even Never Let Me Go. But I just saw A Dangerous Method, and she was truly awful -- really ruined an otherwise good film.

    Ooh, yes, a much happier topic! I loved that production too. It really captured the rustic, bucolic, bawdy feel of the book perfectly.
  9. znachki

    znachki Active Member

    I did read "Mr. Darcy Takes a Wife" by Linda Berdoll
    http://www.amazon.com/Mr-Darcy-Take...=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1337966740&sr=1-1 It was originally a sef-published book and is the "racy" continuation of what happens after the wedding. Meh.

    One that I actually thought was interesing was Darcy's Story by Janet Aylmer.
    She basically gives you Darcy's half of the equation, with more backstory regarding Georgiana and Wickham and such.
  10. jlai

    jlai Title-less

    I thought Darcy's story was bleh. Some nice moments though.

    ETA: Death comes to Pemberley started off all right. A bit wild towards the end
    Last edited: May 25, 2012
  11. Artemis@BC

    Artemis@BC Well-Known Member

    Don't bother with Death Comes to Pemberley by P.D. James. Although I did like a few of the life-at-Pemberley bits, it fails as a mystery (surprising, given the author), and the whole last act is exposition-overload and WTF-where-did-that-come-from moments.
  12. miffy

    miffy Well-Known Member

    Regarding the Sense & Sensibility film & Elinor's age, I am not sure if it is true but Wikipedia says this:


    I lurve that movie despite the age thing, I think Thompson does a fabulous job, better than Kate Winslet. There is one scene though, where they have a picnic and I always thought Elinor had a better chemistry with Willoughby than Marianne, and then they did end up getting married IRL. :lol:

    I saw some of the BBC version, & thought it was ok...love the girl who played Margaret (who was also Posy Fossil in the BBC's Ballet Shoes) and thought she was the best thing about it - but I also love the girl who played Margaret in the film too, so overall I prefer the film.

    LOVE Hugh Lawrie's grumpy character, like an English old fashioned House. :D
  13. Erin

    Erin Well-Known Member

    You're more likely to stir the pot by suggesting you liked the 1999 Mansfield Park ;) I don't know off too many serious Austen fans who enjoy this version, although there is a minority who do. I seem to have some kind of either amnesia or masochism when it comes to this movie, as I watch it anytime it's on TV, each time expecting to like it better and I never do. I really should learn my lesson and quit wasting my time! But I'm one of the few who really likes book-Fanny and admires her steadfast morality, so there is no way that I would be happy with a character as vastly different as movie-Fanny. I'm still waiting for a good adaptation of Mansfield Park, as the recent one with Billie Piper is also terrible.

    Back on the original topic, I don't know how much I'll add to the discussion that hasn't been already said, but I prefer the 1995 version overall - more faithful to the book, Colin Firth is my definitive Mr. Darcy, slightly preferred Ehle's portrayal of Elizabeth, and on the minor characters, this version had a wittier Mr. Bennet, a Caroline Bingley with a permanent bitchface, a smarter Mr. Bingley, and a meeker Georgiana Darcy. I didn't find Ehle smug at all, just confident and a little bit mischievous in a playful way. I can see why people find Mrs. Bennet and Mr. Collins a bit cartoonish, but that didn't really bother me, as they're written as cartoonish in the book. Oh, and I liked this Charlotte Lucas better - more practical and sensible, whereas the 2005 Charlotte came across as a bit pathetic. Wickham is much more charming than Rupert Friend's portrayal (although the actor who plays Wickham is much less physically attractive than Friend).

    I did like the 2005 version, particularly the scenery and soundtrack, and feel like it captured the mood and feel of the book reasonably well given its 2 hour running time. I thought Keira Knightly did a surprisingly good job, although didn't live up to Ehle's performance earlier. Jane Bennet was the one major improvement in casting from the 2005 version, as it was hard to see why 1995 Jane was the "great beauty" of the neighbourhood. I don't have major complaints about most of the cast, but I wouldn't consider them standout performances. The two that I had the biggest issues with were McFadyen's Darcy and Georgiana Darcy, who was way too confident.

    On some of the other adaptations that have been mentioned here, I love the Ang Lee/Emma Thompson Sense & Sensibility, even though it is probably one of the least faithful adaptations of Austen's books. Thompson mentions in the commentary that by the time she was through with the screenplay, she realized how few of Austen's lines she had left and treasured/protected what was left. But it gets the overall feel right in spite of that...it probably helps that I think it's the only Austen adaptation I saw before reading the book, so I didn't have any preconceived notions of what it should be. The 2007 version is also terrific, though, much more faithful to the book, and it's kind of nice to be able to watch them both. The 2007 version when I want the book brought to life and the Emma Thompson one when I just want to watch a good story with good acting.

    Lurve the Amanda Root Persuasion, tough call as to whether that or 1995 P&P is my all time favourite Austen adaptation. The newer Persuasion is a big disappointment in comparison, although is probably OK on its own merits. And agree with the generally consensus that the Kate Beckinsale Emma is the best one of that novel, although I hadn't seen all of the Romola Garai version yet. And it's been a while since I saw the Carey Mulligan Northanger Abbey, but I remember liking it well enough, even though it was being trashed by a lot of the rabid Austenites.
  14. beepbeep

    beepbeep Brazilian Eurotrash

    My favourite quote from 1995 P&P.

    "Her teeth are tolerable, I suppose."

    Is there a Caroline Bingley day? There should be one.
  15. IceAlisa

    IceAlisa discriminating and persnickety ballet aficionado

    We have a poster with a user name "Caroline Bingley". :)
  16. Wyliefan

    Wyliefan Well-Known Member

    I liked it. :slinkaway :) It had some flaws, but I thought it captured the original tone and characters rather nicely.
  17. Laney

    Laney Active Member

    I soooooo love the 1995 BBC-Version of P&P. I don´t know how often I watched it and right now I wish I would have the time to watch it again! I LOVE Colin Firth as Mr. Darcy and also Jennifer Ehle as Elizabeth. I think all characters were casted perfect - or at least I like all of them. I tried to watch the 2005 version but I have to admit I didn´t finished the movie because all felt so wrong for me I wasn´t able to watch it to the end. I like both S&S versions, and usually I prefer the BBC-version. And maybe you can help me: I´m searching for the music of the first dance from Elizabeth and Mr. Darcy. I bought the soundtrack but there´s only a tiny little piece of it on it. It´s also at the beginning of "Emma" with Gwyneth Paltrow. Emma and Mr. Knightley also dance to it in that movie. Does anybody know how this dance and the music is called? I would like to have it sooo much but can´t find it. Thanks for your help!
    PS.Sorry for my bad English. Today I have the feeling I make tons of mistakes...
  18. Asli

    Asli Well-Known Member

    ITA with you. She has a very beautiful and expressive face and loads of natural talent IMO, but watching her act together with trained actors, one feels that the three years spent at drama school usually aren't wasted. She especially lacks voice control and range of movement, her posture is horrific and she does not have any sense of acting according to the period.
  19. nerdycool

    nerdycool Well-Known Member

    From what I have gathered, it's called "Mr. Beveridge's Maggot"... but I don't know if that refers to the dance, the song, or both. If you search for it on YouTube, there are a few videos of it, and all the dances are the same with the same music.
  20. nerdycool

    nerdycool Well-Known Member

    I have this one, as well as the follow-up "Darcy & Elizabeth". Um... not really believable as a continuation of Pride & Prejudice, but they're entertaining (and pretty racy) if you separate them as stand-alone books. They read more like a romance novel... which I suppose they are if you think about it.

    I've also read the trilogy by Pamela Aidan which was done from Mr. Darcy's point of view. They were okay. But the thing I liked most about them was that when the author described what people were wearing, if possible, she described the outfit based off of the 1995 BBC mini-series. So it kind of brought it more to life.
  21. Cachoo

    Cachoo Well-Known Member

    Ita also about Keira in period films versus modern settings. I saw "The Duchess" recently and found Hayley Atwell more compelling in that film (not crazy about it.) I did not dislike her in "Atonement" though so maybe there is hope. I thought her awful in "A Dangerous Method." I think I am so sold on the 90's P&P that even if she were masterful in the new version I still would prefer Ehle.
  22. miffy

    miffy Well-Known Member

    I've given in to temptation and put on the 1995 dvd. Mr miffy is thrilled about this thread. :lol:
  23. Holley Calmes

    Holley Calmes Well-Known Member

    Each to his or her own. I quite enjoyed it. I wasn't expecting a whole lot anyway since the author is so very old. I hope I write that well at her age (though I know she had "help...") I wouldn't tell Austen fans not to give it a try.
  24. Artemis@BC

    Artemis@BC Well-Known Member

    ^ I was actually quite liking it for the first 2/3 or so. But as soon as they started the courtroom scenes, it went way, way, way downhill fast. Too much exposition is a pet peeve of mine, and the post-courtroom revelations, the entire plot tied up in a 15-page speech ... ugh. Unforgiveable flaw IMO.
  25. emason

    emason Well-Known Member

    The BBC also did an earlier version in 1983, starring Sylvestra Le Touzel as Fanny and Samantha Bond as Maria Bertram, among others. I saw bits and pieces of it about 13 years ago when what was then called the Romance Channel on cable was showing episodes of it every night. I don't remember much about it, but it might be worth a look if you can track it down.
  26. dinakt

    dinakt Well-Known Member

    Oh no, no, no... Not Anna Karenina! I would never ever imagine her as Anna. We need slightly older, dark, introverted beauty, with perfect posture and calm manner ( initially) which comes apart as the movie progresses... Keira... is not that AT ALL. I have an easier time accepting her as Lara ( whom she played) than Anna. But, as the movie ( I went to IMDB) is post- production, we only have to wait for reviews.

    All this talk made me purchase 1995 P&P version. It makes me happy.
    I also looked at 1980 version. Not bad, but for my taste, too illustrative; part of why I love 1995 is that they show all these people occasionally getting out of society- imposed behavior ( Lizzie running, playing with the dog etc). Manners are manners, but people stay people, with their emotions trying to come out despite the upbringing.
    1980- Lizzie is sweet, Darcy is stuck-up... and so they stay. BUT I might be unfair as my heart is given away to 1995 already.
    Last edited: May 26, 2012
  27. IceAlisa

    IceAlisa discriminating and persnickety ballet aficionado

    I agree. Who would be a good candidate, do you think?
  28. zippy

    zippy Active Member

    I don't see Knightley as Anna at all, although she might have made a good Kitty. Maybe Kate Winslet could have done well with the role of Anna?
  29. Cachoo

    Cachoo Well-Known Member

    Nicole with dark hair?
  30. KHenry14

    KHenry14 Well-Known Member

    What you may not know is that Anna is also being directed by Joe Wright, who directed the 2005 P&P. Joe likes to work with the same actors (as mentioned Tom Hollander did Hanna) so it was no surprise to me that Keira got selected here.

    Secondly, for those of you who think Keira is sort of a "one-note" actress, please take a look at Domino http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0421054/ Not a movie for the faint of heart, but it's a completely different charactor for her.