JANE AUSTEN MOVIE CLUB: Your Favorites

The first Tuesday of every month, Risky Regencies becomes the place to talk about Jane Austen adaptations, and adaptations of other Regency-interest novels.

Usually, we have one particular adaptation to talk about…

…but today is different.

Today is List Day.

I particularly like the number five today, so today we will do Lists Of Five.

So…

Of all the Jane Austen adaptations you’ve ever seen, on television or in the movie theatre…

What were your Five Favorite Adaptations?

Which were your Five Favorite Heroes To Swoon Over?

Which were your Five Least Favorite Casting Decisions?

(Of course, if you have fewer than five for any of these categories, that’s also fine and dandy!)

Which Five Adaptations Are You Most Likely to Watch Repeatedly?

Which Five Heroines Were Your Favorites?

Which were your Five Favorite Comic Performances?

(Answer any of these questions, or all!)

Which Five Adaptations Did You Think Had The Most Wrong With Them?

What are your Top Five Cringeworthy Moments?

Your Five Favorite Moments?

And last, but not least…what five (or any) adaptations (Jane Austen or other) would you like to discuss in the future?

All answers welcome!

Cara
Cara King, who is currently debating the relative merits of the names Elliot and Ezra…

About Elena Greene

Elena Greene grew up reading anything she could lay her hands on, including her mother's Georgette Heyer novels. She also enjoyed writing but decided to pursue a more practical career in software engineering. Fate intervened when she was sent on a three year international assignment to England, where she was inspired to start writing romances set in the Regency. Her books have won the National Readers' Choice Award, the Desert Rose Golden Quill and the Colorado Romance Writers' Award of Excellence. Her Super Regency, LADY DEARING'S MASQUERADE, won RT Book Club's award for Best Regency Romance of 2005 and made the Kindle Top 100 list in 2011. When not writing, Elena enjoys swimming, cooking, meditation, playing the piano, volunteer work and craft projects. She lives in upstate New York with her two daughters and more yarn, wire and beads than she would like to admit.
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Megan Frampton
14 years ago

Cara:

I choose Persuasion for the adaptation I’d watch over and over again. I love all the parts of the movie, and I think the Mr. Elliot and the snooty daughter performances were brilliant, too.

My heroes include Ciaran, Colin and Matthew.

I really didn’t like Emma with Gwyneth Paltrow, not any part of it at all.

And now, of course, I want to forget all I have to do and curl up with Captain Wentworth. Sigh.

Lois
14 years ago

Okie dokie, here goes nothing! πŸ™‚

What were your Five Favorite Adaptations?
1 – P&P95
2 – S&S95
3 – Emma96
4 – P&P40
5 – the first 3 are my major big time favorites, so here probably would be a lot of ties πŸ™‚

Which were your Five Favorite Heroes To Swoon Over?
1 – Colin Firth as Darcy
2 – Jeremy Northam as Knightly
3 – Alan Rickman as Brandon
4 – the newest Edward Ferrars

Which were your Five Least Favorite Casting Decisions?
the only thing that remotely fits here is in P&P05 (was it 2005?), I kept seeing James Bond’s M instead of Lady Catherine. LOL πŸ™‚

Which Five Adaptations Are You Most Likely to Watch Repeatedly?
1 – P&P95
2 – S&S95
3 – Emma96

but let me also do it this way, the one movie for each book that I’m most inclined to see – NA07 is the only one I saw of that, so I’m leaving NA off the list
1 – P&P95
2 – S&S95
3 – Emma96
4 – Per07
5 – MP07

Which Five Heroines Were Your Favorites?
1 – Jen Ehle’s Lizzie
2 – Emma Thompsons’s Elinor
3 – Kate Winslet’s Marianne
4 – Greer Garson’s Lizzie
5 – Olivia Williams (hope that’s her name)’s Jane Austen

Which were your Five Favorite Comic Performances?
1 – Mr Collins (95)
oh geez, he’s the only one I can think of right now! LOL

Which Five Adaptations Did You Think Had The Most Wrong With Them?
Becoming Jane, P&P05 and MP99 πŸ™‚

What are your Top Five Cringeworthy Moments?
Ah. . . hm. You know, I have no idea right now.

Your Five Favorite Moments?
1 – Darcy, lake. πŸ™‚
2 – Darcy, grin, after saying “you’re perfectly right, you’ve employed your time much better” πŸ™‚
3 – Darcy, grin, while Lizzie is behind Georgiana as she played piano
4 – Darcy, grin, while thinking back to Lizzie standing behind Georgiana as she played the piano
5 – Darcy and Lizzie, first dance at Netherfield Ball

And last, but not least…what five (or any) adaptations (Jane Austen or other) would you like to discuss in the future?
Um. . . I’ll leave this to anyone else who knows more period movies than I do. Unless you want to do either Star Trek 5, 6, or 7? πŸ˜‰

Lois

Keira Soleore
14 years ago

Way to go, Lois, on answering all the questions. Here I go…

What were your Five Favorite Adaptations?
-P&P ’05
-Persuasion
-S&S ’08
-Northanger Abbey ’08
-Emma ’08
-Miss Austen Regrets

Which were your Five Favorite Heroes To Swoon Over?
-James McAvoy (Tom LeFroy, Becoming Jane)
-Matthew MacFadyen
-Jeremy Northam
-Dan Stevens (new Edward Ferrars)
-Colin Firth
-Rupert Penry-Jones (new Cpt Wentworth)

Which were your Five Least Favorite Casting Decisions?
-Mrs. Bennet in P&P ’95
-Marianne’s mother in S&S ’95
-Caroline Bingley in P&P ’95

Which Five Adaptations Are You Most Likely to Watch Repeatedly?
-P&P ’05 (I already have and will continue to do so)
-Miss Austen Regrets

Which Five Heroines Were Your Favorites?
-Keira Knightley
-Janet McTeer (Mrs. Dashwood)
-Sally Hawkins (Anne Elliot)
-Felicity Jones (Catherine Morland)
-Olivia Williams(Jane Austen)
-Greta Scacchi (Cassandra Austen)

Which were your Five Favorite Comic Performances?
-(Mr. Collins)

Which Five Adaptations Did You Think Had The Most Wrong With Them?
-Becoming Jane

What are your Top Five Cringeworthy Moments?
-The pig in P&P ’05
-Mrs. Bennet ’95 on her tirades

Your Five Favorite Moments?
-They all involve Lizzie and Mr. Darcy with memorable lines

Cara King
14 years ago

LOL! You guys are great!

Here’s mine:

5 FAVE ADAPTATIONS (in no particular order):

— Persuasion with Ciaran Hinds & Amanda Root
— 1995 P&P (Firth and Ehle!!!)
— Ang Lee/Emma Thompson S&S
— Emma with Paltrow and Jeremy Northam
— the new Northanger Abbey

FIVE HEROES:

Ciaran Hinds’s Wentworth
Colin Firth’s Darcy
Jeremy Northam’s Knightley
Matthew Macfadyen’s Darcy
Alan Rickman’s Brandon

LEAST FAVE CASTING DECISIONS

1) Billie Piper as the new Fanny in MP

2) Peter Firth as Tilney in the old Northanger Abbey

3) a tie: the Jane Fairfax in the 1972 Emma, and the Jane Fairfax in the Gwyneth Paltrow Emma (which was Polly Walker, who I like in other things, but who just felt wrong to me)

WATCH REPEATEDLY

1995 P&P
Paltrow Emma
Ang Lee S&S
Persuasion with Ciaran Hinds
recent Northanger Abbey

(Okay, just noticed it was the same list as my fave list!)

FAVE HEROINES

Emma Thompson’s Elinor Dashwood
Jennifer Ehle’s Elizabeth Bennet
Amanda Root’s Anne Elliot
Felicity Jones’s Catherine M
Keira Knightley’s Elizabeth Bennet

FAVE COMIC PERFORMANCES

— Mr. Collins in 1995
— Mr. Collins in 2005
— Sophie Thompson as Miss Bates
— Brenda Blethyn’s Mrs. Bennet (05)
— Hugh Laurie behind the newspaper in the 1995 S&S πŸ™‚

MOST WRONG ADAPTATIONS

— the 1999 Mansfield Park
— the 2007 Mansfield Park
— the 1983 Mansfield Park
— the 2007 Persuasion

Well, that’s all from me for now!

Cara

Amanda McCabe
14 years ago

LOL, Cara! This is so complicated, and I’m meant to be working (shh!) not thinking of JA adapatations all day. πŸ™‚ I will simplify for now–favorite adaptation by far, the 1990s Persuasion. Least fave, the new Persuasion (if I never see that one again, it will be too soon). Fave of the new batch–again, by far, NA. I bought it on DVD and the more I watch it the more charming it is! I have to buy Miss Austen Regrets next.

“-James McAvoy (Tom LeFroy, Becoming Jane)
-Matthew MacFadyen”

I think I will have to challenge Keira to a duel for these! πŸ™‚

Elizabeth Kerri Mahon
14 years ago

I have to agree with Megan and Amanda, the number one adaptation that I would watch again and again is Persuasion with Amanda Root and Ciaran Hinds. I love everything about it from the way Anne starts to glow towards the end to Wentworth writing the letter. Perfect in everyway. Then would come S&S with Emma and finally P&P ’95 version (although I do like the earlier version with Elizabeth Garvie and David Rintoul as well, the first Masterpiece adaption of a Jane Austen I ever saw).

Heroes include Wentworth, Darcy, and Mr. Knightley. Oh and James McAvoy as Tom Lefroy.

Loved Clueless the most out of the Emma versions.

Lois
14 years ago

Yes, I knew I was going to think of some once others posted or something — Hugh Laurie behind the newspaper in the 1995 S&S πŸ™‚

Totally agree — and I also liked the Miss Bates in the Jeremy Northam Emma. . .

that’s all the additions I can think of right now. πŸ™‚

lois

janegeorge
14 years ago

Yup. James MvAvoy is a crumpet.
Just had to add that. πŸ™‚

He’s my current screensaver:
http://movie-wallpaper-screensaver.net/wallpapers-screensavers/Penelope/

My pre-teen daughter is currently watching the 2005 P&P over and over and over…

janegeorge
14 years ago

Oops!

Just google “penelope screensavers”
to get to right page. It’s top of the list.

Keira Soleore
14 years ago

I agree with Elizabeth. I would add Clueless to the movie I’d watch over and over (and have) again.

I agree with Cara. Brenda Blethyn was brilliant as Mrs. Bennet. I’ve watched many of Blethyn’s movies, and she’s very, very good.

I’m becoming quite the duelist.
1. Todd over Ehle
2. Ammanda over MacFadyen and McAvoy

Anyone else?

Elena Greene
14 years ago

I wrote at a feverish pace today (got to keep up that post-retreat momentum!) so I’m glad Cara put in her votes. Mine are about 90% the same so I’ll just talk about the differences!

Another least favorite casting decision: Greer Garson in the 1940 P&P.

As to least favorite, I missed the most recent Mansfield Park but am guessing it would have been. As it is, I find most adaptations entertaining though with a few I’ve had to get over the fact that they don’t seem faithful. Becoming Jane and the 1999 Mansfield Park are in that category. Also the 1940 P&P–I cannot quite get past the costumes or Lady Catherine de Bourgh as a matchmaker!

Elena Greene
14 years ago

Oh and as to which movies I’d like to see and talk about next…

– modern reinterpretations, e.g. Clueless, Bridget Jones, Bride & Prejudice

– other movies that are Regency or thereabouts, e.g. Sharpe, Hornblower, Vanity Fair

– any Jane Austen adaptation we haven’t yet discussed!

Santa
14 years ago

I’d watch Persusion over and over again but not the new version. I don’t think I liked anything about it, save the father. I thought he was spot on.

I adored Clueless and get a tickle out of it each time I see it. I liked the Gweneth P. version of Emma but mostly because of Mr. Knightly.

I wonder if I could stitch together great moments of all the different adaptations of each of the above.

The only one that is true in every sense is the 1996 version of Pride and Prejudice. All my favorite moments come from this movie with honorable mention to the writing and reading of Wentworth’s letter.

Mrs. Bennett in the Colin Firth’s P &P is hysterically funny. Mr. Collins comes a close second. They also hold the most cringeworthy awards which they’ll have to share with Lydia.

Did I touch on everything?

I’d welcome any and all discussions on these adaptations. How about talking about Jane Austen set in modern times ala Clueless?

Megan Frampton
14 years ago

I gotta say, the casting of Bride and Prejudice left me confused. The Darcy character was nowhere near as cool and fun as the Bingley character. I turned it off when I realized where it was all going. Sadly disappointing, for me at least.

Todd
14 years ago

I would answer all these questions, but my answers would be almost identical to Cara’s! Wow. Do I have no independent taste of my own?!!

Definitely agree about the new Northanger Abbey! I think it was the best of all the new adaptations by far, though I liked the new S&S better than Cara did (though not as well as the Emma Thompson version). The new Persuasion…why? Why?

For comic moments–while it does not occur in the book, I thought the brief scene with Darcy coaching Bingley on how to propose in the recent P&P was very funny.

Looks like Billie Piper isn’t making anyone’s favorite list. Maybe we should add a category for “best cleavage.” πŸ™‚

Todd-who-would-still-list-Jennifer-Ehle-first

Todd
14 years ago

As for future movies–doing modern homages like Clueless would work for me. Elena also mentioned the Sharpe and Hornblower movies, which would be fun. There are other Regency-set films, too, like Princess Caraboo and Amazing Grace (but I guess we already discussed that one).

Todd-who-is-reasonably-clueless-himself

Victoria Dahl
14 years ago

I know the Kiera Knightley P&P gets a lot of knocks, but I lurve it. My favorite moment by far is when Darcy cooly helps her into a carriage (?) and then there is a close up of him flexing his hand as if there are little tingles going through it. Mmm. Perfect romantic moment.

Georgie
14 years ago

My five favorite are, in no particular order
1) Persuasion
2) Sense and Sensibility w/ Emma Thompson
3) P&P with Keira Knightly
4)P&P with Colin Firth
5) Emma w/ Jeremy Northam

Cara King
14 years ago

Victoria, Georgie, always nice to hear someone else who really liked the Keira Knightley P&P!

Cara

laviniaveiled
14 years ago

Favs-

1) 95 Sense & Sensibility
2) ’07 Persuasion
3) Paltrow Emma
4) Amanda Root Persuasion
5) ’99 Mansfield Park (don’t kill me!)

Does anyone else wish that Romola Garai had been cast in the ’05 P&P instead of Keira? Keira was okay, but Romola was the director’s first choice and she would have been PERFECT.

Also, I recently finished reading Mansfield Park (finally) and found myself wishing that the film’s Fanny had been directly inspired by the actual novel’s Fanny. I was wishing that the book were much closer to Patricia Rozema’s vision…does anyone else agree? Am I just a blasphemer? I’m sure I’m not the first to bring this one up. (I DID love the book, of course!)

Thanks, ladies!

Cara King
14 years ago

laviniaveiled wrote:

’99 Mansfield Park (don’t kill me!)

Well, I’m glad it pleased someone! After all, if we all had the same taste, we’d all want to marry the same man, and then poor Todd would be so busy! πŸ˜‰

BTW, I had NO idea that the director wanted Romola Garai for Lizzy in the recent P&P! That’s fascinating! Though I did actually like Keira K, a lot — I think she had a nice combination of youth, open emotion, and intelligence — but I like Romola G an awful lot too, and she would have been very different, and very good! (BTW, I saw her do Cordelia to Ian McKellen’s Lear not long ago, and she was very good there too.)

I was wishing that the book were much closer to Patricia Rozema’s vision…does anyone else agree? Am I just a blasphemer?

Blaspheme all you want to — this is Risky Regencies, we can take it! πŸ™‚

Actually, I do recall that a lot of the reviews liked the movie Fanny a lot better than the book Fanny — and she’s certainly much easier on modern palates. She actually *does* things, and has active (rather than almost entirely passive) virtues and goals…

It’s interesting — when I listed the my four top problematic adaptations, three of them were versions of Mansfield Park — I think it’s clearly the hardest to adapt to modern tastes (particularly without changing it so much the Austen fans get up in arms.) I have spent some time brainstorming on how it could be done, though, when I should have been writing…interesting problem! πŸ™‚

Cara

laviniaveiled
14 years ago

Cara,
you’re so right on all counts! I have a bias against Keira that I think a lot of young women my age share. And I ESPECIALLY dislike that Romola keeps getting passed over for the oh-so popular and *ahem* THIN Keira. I’m not convinced of Keira’s acting chops as of yet and it feels like she was the convenient choice, when the road less traveled…well, you understand. I mean no disrespect whatsoever, of course.

Also, I am absolutely positive that I enjoy the Rozema MP so much because I did not read the book first. I am very fond of Frances as Fanny the passionate writer! I can understand why so many people are put off by the movie and the book respectively when experiencing one before the other.

Please forgive me for rattling on! I am very excited to have such a forum to share my thoughts in.

Cara, I’m counting on you for a faithful adaptation of Mansfield Park someday! πŸ˜‰

Cara King
14 years ago

Cara, I’m counting on you for a faithful adaptation of Mansfield Park someday! πŸ˜‰

I’ll do my best. πŸ˜‰

Cara

laviniaveiled
14 years ago

Just really quick again…Roger Ebert mentioned in his review that the 1999 Mansfield Park is not faithful to the plot of Austen, but it is certainly faithful to the spirit of the author herself. I have to agree!

Also, I really love the new Northanger Abbey (:

And the number one comic performance of all time for me goes to Hugh as Mr.Palmer and that newspaper…cracks me up EVERY TIME!

Todd
14 years ago

Cara wrote:

After all, if we all had the same taste, we’d all want to marry the same man, and then poor Todd would be so busy! πŸ˜‰

Welcome…to Fantasy Island!

Todd-who-is-not-sure-if-it’s-a-dream-or-a-nightmare