Saturday, 17 September 2011

Pride & Prejudice

UK Release: 16th September 2005
Watched on TV: Friday 16th September 2011
Rating: U
Genre: Drama, Romance
Runtime: 2hrs 7mins
Tagline: Sometimes the last person on earth you want to be with is the one person you can't be without.
IMDb Plot Summary: Sparks fly when spirited Elizabeth Bennett meets single, rich, and proud Mr. Darcy. But Mr. Darcy reluctantly finds himself falling in love with a woman beneath his class. Can each overcome their own pride and prejudice?

My Review: Pride and Prejudice is THE classic romance. And, in my opinion, this adaptation is one of the best. Kiera Knightley is perfect of Lizzie adding an intelligence and snobbishness to the role that works well. Matthew Macfayden brings a quiet, sensitive, your-heart-swells-just-looking-at-him side to the character and the line “you have bewitched me heart and soul” always gets me! In fact the film is filled to the brim with some excellent British talent, and even some, such as one of my favourite actresses Carey Mulligan and Talulah Riley, who were relatively unknown at the time of release, but are now stars. Rosamund Pike plays the oldest Bennet sister Jane with elegance and mystery while Brenda Blethyn brings comedy to Mrs Bennet and Donald Sutherland warmth to Mr Bennet. The last scene of the film is a scene between Knightley and Sutherland and it is very moving; there father/daughter relationship beautifully realistic. There are too many others to mention, but particular favourites are Penelope Wilton and Simon Woods (who plays all of Bingley’s awkward, dimness to perfection). 
But as a classic romance, you can be forgiven for thinking that it would be stuffed full of cliches and too cheesy for words. Thankfully this isn’t the case as the makers played it straight with warm humour and stunning landscapes. Yet, one such ‘cliche’ that can be picked up on is when Elizabeth and Darcy are out in a rainstorm and he declares his love for her. Any other film would let them kiss, the music swelling and end scene. But not here! More realistically they get into an argument, the sexual tension boiling away, where you can actually see them both getting closer, wanting to kiss: it could have gone either way, but instead they part, making the reconciliation kiss near the end all the more sweet and satisfying. 
One more thing I must touch on is the soundtrack. It is honestly one of my favourite soundtracks for a film, and incredibly unique. When the first few chords strike up at the beginning you are instantly transported to regency times... perfect for a day in bed sick as I found out! 
Score: 8.5/10

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