Thursday, November 17, 2005

Pride and Prejudice - The Latest Film Version

The film ended, the lights came up, the credits began to rolling and the audience erupted in spontaneous applause. How often does that happen at the movies! The film was "Pride and Prejudice." This latest adaptation of Jane Austen's timeless classic is a delight. Keira Knightley portrays Elizabeth Bennet, and is the magnificent and luminescent center of this compelling tale of caste and clan. Close-ups of Knightley's face alone would be worth the price of admission. Her physiognomy combines all the best elements of Audrey Hepburn and Winona Ryder. The ensemble cast has been brilliantly assembled. I am no great fan of Donald Sutherland, but he is masterfully cast as the impoverished and befuddled pater familias of the Bennet family - replete with five daughters to be married off. He is a Victorian Tevye - with no Yenta in sight to arrange the matches.

Dame Judy Dench is deliciously imperious as Lady Catherine, the harridan who embodies all that was wrong with the class system of that bygone age. Her brief scenes are memorable and captivating. Her character gives new meaning to the phrase: "Big hair"!

This is a film well worth seeing. I could not write a better review than the one that appeared in the Boston Globe last Friday, so I will share with you Wesley Morris's thoughts on this fine film:



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