Pride and Prejudice details
|Formats:||U DVD, Blu-ray|
|Starring:||Brenda Blethyn, Keira Knightley, Matthew MacFadyen, Rosamund Pik, Judi Dench, Jena Malone, Rosamund Pike, Donald Sutherland, Claudie Blakley, Tom Hollander|
|Studio:||UNIVERSAL PICTURES UK|
Pride and Prejudice
|Run time:||2 hours 7 minutes|
|Rental release:||17 May 2010|
|Dubbed:||German, French, Spanish, Italian, Japanese|
|Subtitles:||Cantonese, Danish, Dutch, English, Finnish, French, German, Greek, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Mandarin, Norwegian, Portuguese, Spanish, Swedish|
Most helpful review
Not remotely true to Austen, just Bridget Jones in silly dresses.By a customer from Scotland , 14 Nov 2005
[Highly rated reviewer]Well Wright may have made a gritty depiction of life around 1800 - as he so repeatedly and anally goes on about because of when it was written as opposed to published - but it is HIS not Austen's and shouldn't claim to be an adaptation.
Mrs Bennett looks like a rural washerwoman. This is a pampered woman - they have servants (remember the book scene with the servant dressing the hair, etc)? But Wright portrays her with rough reddened skin all down her chest, rough hands and working in the kitchen.
Mr Bennett - the script makes too cuddly and modern and ignored the weakness in him. The scene where he stops Mary playing is supposed to make you cringe - not pass in seconds. If it doesn't - don't include it.
MacFadyen is very weak in the part and seems to be doing some kind of Pride by numbers acting. The first proposal he looks like a nervous schoolboy rather than a man overcoming his pride to make a proposal beneath his station. Most of his lines, he could as well be reading a shopping list.
Lydia is awful. Completely over the top with excessive shrieking and skipping. Indeed, Knightley plays Elizabeth more like the giggling inane character Lydia actually is in the book, at times.
And Elizabeth. Half the time Knightley is, clearly, mimicing Ehle's voice and intonation - close your eyes to see what a copy it is. And in her role you see Wright's major error - there is NO PREJUDICE.
From the first encounter with Darcy she clearly fancies him. When he comments to Bingley on the attractiveness of the women in the hall she initially looks hurt - not shocked and pissed off. The latter should set up the prejudice side of things. And when she and 'caroline' are prancing round the room she comes across like a tease, completely up for it. And by virtually cutting out Wickham you don't get Elizabeth invested enough there to set up the prejudicial aspects falling out of that relationship.
And she is Caroline not Miss Bingley apparently. And Mr Bingley happily wanders into Jane's bedroom. And and and - Wright can boast about he great he is with period all he wants. But a few panorama shots of rural life (which seem to show he prefers Hardy frankly) don't excuse him the glaring blunders all over the place.
The cinematographer - who clearly wants awards - should have been reined in. He veered between Bronte and Hardy throughout the film - and wasn't the last proposal shots/lighting from Tess? The need to see Darcy walk along through the 'scape with unkempt shirt was just dumb. But most importantly - when going between those 2 very different landscapes they forget the most important one - Austen. (She'd have laughed out loud at the Elizabeth = sad, therefore = rain, running through to picturesque folly rubbish).
I admit I found it impossible the watch the film without using the book as context. I was prepared to give it some leeway as it had to provide the story in a short space of time. But to forget fully one half of the core of the book in prejudice and mess up all over the place? I could only see it as a mess with generally poor performances (when Knightley wasn't aping Ehle she was gurning or skipping or both) - although for some it was simply a case of bad script.
Tom Holland/Judi Dench alone would escape censure. The former toned down the comic aspects of Collins, and turned in a very interesting approach. Dench does superbly the schtick she can do in her sleep whether it be here or in Oscar Wilde.
The shortened length could have been handled by a competent sreenwriter surely? Not characters filling in story gaps and helping along the audience all over the place. Elizabeth couldn't have come up with the £10k figure. And while they wanted to cut time with her learning of Darcy's involvement in Wickhams marriage the lines didn't fit with Lydia. It was the worst case of incongruous exposition in the piece.
It really is appalling stuff. Anyone who reviews it saying it works well in the context of the book is someone I frankly don't believe has read or understood the characterisations in the damn thing. Wright seems to think his characters are in the 1990s not the 1709s from their behaviour. I'm not convinced he has read the book - he certainly doesn't understand it. He doesn't understand Austen's acerbic wit or lightness of touch - he certainly made a dull plodding film out of it.
What is possibly worse was the sad pathetic need of the chick lit lovers to need the 'I love you, I love yous' all over the place so they can sigh and get off on it. The fact that it has no place in a work by Austen is apparently irrelevant.
Anyone who reviews it as a film alone? Well, more difficult for me except I would note the poor acting, the weak Darcy, and the gurning skipping inane irritation of the whole thing.
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Pride and PredjudiceBy stirlybob (10 reviews) from Nottingham , 06 Mar 2009Enjoyable version of a classic read.
Pride and PrejudiceBy a customer from Exeter , 26 Feb 2009I am at home recuperating after an operation and I loved this film - not one I would usually watch it had a feisty heroine, a handsome leading man and a dodgy mother in law. in short, it brought the book to life in a way no english teacher could.
Just what I thought...By PurpleGiraffe (3 reviews) from Bexleyheath , 24 Feb 2009When I heard they were making a film version of Pride and Prejudice with Keira Knightley, I assumed it would be a very poor film indeed. But the good reviews of the critics and some positive comments by my friends made me come around to the idea of watching it. Unfortunately, I should have stuck to my original thought. This is a very poor film indeed.
While the scenary is lovely, the story is rushed and unfufilled. The actors seem to talk so fast at times - to the extent that at one point I checked I wasn't accidently playing this film on 1.5 speed! The actors are poorly directed, the characters are poorly drawn. The relationships in the story - for example between Jane and Lizzie and Lizzie and her father, are cut out because there is no time.
The script is an odd missmash of verbatim from the text and modern language, which just serves to show how inelegant modern speech is, and how cumbersome Austin's language can be. The events, likewise, are an odd missmash of strict adherance to period and a completely modern retelling - making the modern stand out and the period seem odd.
If you have never read the book, or seen the 1995 BBC adaptation, then I would recommend this film as moderately entertaining. However, if you have any field of reference - stay away!
Don't waste your timeBy CordinaDee (12 reviews) from London , 22 Feb 2009If your idea of a great film is one where hardly anyone acts and you spend the whole time looking at Keira Knightly doing her famous pout, then rent Pride and Prejudice. Having read the book and seen the TV adaptations, I cannot imagine where they got the idea of making it so inanely silly. The book lends itself to being funny in places, but not silly, and Keira Knightly just cannot do humour at all. I think she is better suited in films like Atonement, and did not suit Austen's era in any way. The guy from Spooks was also pretty weak, as he has none of the charm that Mr Darcy's character is famous for, and brings no magic to the screen. I would not even watch this on a sick day - I think I'd much rather watch the Colin Firth BBC version!
Stunning wrapping - disappointing contents.By Floot (13 reviews) from Newent , 11 Feb 2009I should preface my remarks by saying I'm not comparing this to the '95 P&P (or even the '81 P&P) but to the book - even the Beeb adaptation, IMO, is not really a patch on the book itself!
First off, what's good about this film? There is a lot:
Beautiful cast - not being funny, but it's not a cast that's hard on the eyes, and they all look OK for the era and the parts. Though for my money Lizzie is maybe still a touch too pretty (well, too Hollywood!) as compared to Jane, and Darcy not as strikingly handsome as maybe he should be. But minor niggles.
Gorgeous and appropriate settings and costumes - much less sanitised than the BBC version of a decade ago. Much more 'real' feel to the entire production, and the production designers on the whole really did well IMO.
Lovely music which really enhances the film.
Awful script... there are some lovely moments but large chunks of it have been hacked out of all recognition to Austen.
Some totally inappropriate scenes/acting/so on... Lady Catherine visiting at dead of night - Bingley going into Jane's bedroom. When the film LOOKS so beautiful and is all so spot on in that regard, these mistakes glare even more.
Lizzie in particular is just too bolshy - Elizabeth Bennett was not an ordinary girl of her era, but she WAS of her era. She had no need to yell or scream at people, her wit and manner are what allowed her to pop others' balloons. I suspect not entirely Keira Knightly's fault, with the script, but she acted a bit too much like a teenager (she came across how one would have expected Austen's Lydia to act at times) and not a young lady of 20 in an era when that was in many ways quite old. Lizzie in the book, even when angry, has a great deal of control and maturity. Precious little of that comes across here... she is more a belligerent, spoiled teen, hardly recognisable as Austen's character.
The Bennet family overall are cast a little too much as characatures of themselves, and they are just too poor to be believable - this is not the well off (even if their estate is entailed) family who are more worried about getting the daughters married off than about how to get food on the table! Mrs Bennet is in a position to tell Collins that her girls are not needed in the kitchen; why then are they suddenly so poor and cosseted Mrs B so rough?
The US ending. Don't watch it without a sick-bucket - it's truly awful and deserved to end up on the cutting room floor. It does make for amusing viewing if one can stave off the nausea but even with the film as it stands, it just could never 'fit', and as to its relation to the book - it is to Austen what Mills and Boon is to Austen!
Overall... I think if one has never read Austen, it would serve as an introduction to her stories (well, remotely connected to her stories, anyway...) and divorced from the original, it's not a bad movie.
It doesn't IMO do a great job of treading the line between costume drama and appealing to modern audiences; the costume is great, the drama is so modern as to be anachronistic. BUT, it's a love story with a happy ending after lots of interesting misunderstandings, and that's one that is sure to please many in terms of amusement and entertainment and the warm fuzzies come the end of the movie. Judging by all the 4 and 5 star reviews, that's all most people want.
IF you have read the book, or several or all of Austen's books, it loses a good deal of its charm in the tatty and carelessly fugly adaptation of a story and of beautiful language that have stood the test of time and deserve _far_ better treatment. It isn't a modern day version of Austen like Clueless, Pride and Prejudice, etc, but it's not really very good as a costume drama either. As such it falls down between the gaps and the film makers would've done better to choose one way or the other than try to do both and fail on both counts.
It isn't AWFUL, by any means - there are many worse films out there and if one can ignore the mangling of Austen then it's a beautifully shot, beautiful to look at film with beautiful actors, beautiful scenery, beautiful music... Unfortunately along with the beauty it has some ugly, and there's not much character under the outward appearance. If this film were an Austen character, she would be one the protagonist would bitterly regret marrying - Mrs Bennet herself in DVD form perhaps!
Worth a watch? Probably. Worth buying? Only in the sale. Says it all that it has been so severely reduced.! I'd give 2 1/2 stars if I could...