Monday, August 21, 2006

Pride and Prejudice

I watched the new Pride and Predjudice over the weekend, and while I enjoyed it, I don't think it's quite as good as the A&E version.

As far as characters went, the actor playing Lord Bingley made him seem like too much of a simpleton or, well, a dork. I thought from the book that he was just generally a good natured, open kind of guy--at worst a bit naive, but I thought this actor carried that too far. I think the only scene where he looked to have a normal intelligence was when he proposed to Jane.

I definitely liked the Elizabeth Bennet from the A&E version better as well--she was beautiful without looking like a Hollywood toothpick, and made me connect better with her. That's probably because I myself will never be called a toothpick, and it's nice to see folks in the over-110 pound category onscreen :)

I'm not sure which Mr. Darcy did a better job--I will always have a soft spot in my heart for Colin Firth's rendition (mmmm...Colin Firth), but Matthew Macfayden also has the right combination of good looks and brooding eyes.

The scenery was beautiful in the newer version, and they had fun with interesting camera angles, but at some points I think it actually distracted you from the story. Also, in order to cut the story down to fit in a 2-hour movie, they breezed right through some plot points, which made parts of it feel rather rushed.

If I hadn't read the book and/or owned the A&E version already, I probably would have enjoyed it a bit more. But it's hard to really judge a movie on its own merits when you have other versions to compare it to. I think overall it was a good, romantic movie. Despite the now-historical setting of the plot, the story line easily relates to folks today (well, maybe not all of the husband-catching, but if you relate it to dating, then yes). It's also very family-friendly with only a very few innuendos (the scene where Mr. Collins accidentally blurts out "intercourse" while preaching, the scandal caused by the youngest sister, which isn't explained in detail). If you're a romance fan, it's definitely worth renting.

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