Monday, August 26, 2013

Pride and Prejudice

We watched the 2005 Hollywood version of Pride and Prejudice last night as part of our ongoing Jane Austen obsession. It's visually very impressive, and I like the Bennett estate as a working farm. Good pigs. Good cattle. Good hens. Excellent geese. But it skims over the surface of the novel. I did like Donald Sutherland, and I liked a Mrs. Bennett who didn't shriek all the time. No question in my mind, however, that the BBC TV series is much better. I suppose we will have to see the famous Lawrence Olivier version now.

Patrick found an essay on the 2005 Pride and Prejudice movie. The author makes a good defense of it, but agrees that it is more a movie experience than a Jane Austen experience. I thought a lot of it was lovely -- and gritty and Hogarthian. The essayist says it works visually to a considerable extent. You are given information through images, rather than dialogue. We bought it at a large discount at Target, so will be able to watch it again.

Austen, I suspect from her writing, was not especially visual. It's her dialogue and her narrative voice that I notice and remember.

I woke this morning thinking it was not a good movie. Emma Thompson wanted her name off the script, and this was a wise decision. The script is not good, except when it uses Austen's lines. I think it's a serious mismatch. A director who thinks visually and an author who thinks in words not images. The script writer should have been a bridge. But it's not a good script...


Blogger Portlandia said...

The 1940 version is laugh-out-loud terrible, but Olivier might be the sexiest Darcy ever.

11:39 AM  

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