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Big screen adaptation of Jane Austen's classic novel. When Fanny Price (Frances O'Connor) is sent by her debt-ridden mother to live with her rich aunt, she struggles to adjust to her new aristrocratic lifestyle. Her 'superior' relatives constantly ignore her, and only her cousin Edmond (Jonny Lee Miller) shows any interest. However, Fanny's charm and wit win her many potential suitors, and before long she has to decide whether she wishes to wed for love or status.
Patricia Rozema is a Canadian director with the nerve to helm smart, big budget movies, as she proves again in Mansfield Park. She had her first hit with the quirky I've Heard the Mermaids Singing (1987) in which the heroine, a mouse among art gallery sharks, eventually comes into her own, surpassing the mentor who's risen on her back. Similarly, in Mansfield Park, adapted from Jane Austen's strongly autobiographical novel, penniless city mouse Fanny Price (Frances O'Connor) comes to live in a handsome country manor with the Bertrams, her heartless, class-conscious relations. After many cruel setbacks, Fanny manages, by dint of writing talent and moral integrity, to win the day and the love of her life Edmund (Trainspotting's Jonny Lee Miller).
Unlike filmmakers who dress up Austen's money-driven world in sweetness and light, Rozema rubs our noses in the fact that the Bertrams' wealth flows from the blood and sweat of faraway slaves. The adaptation never euphemises the down-and-dirty slum life which has swallowed up Fanny's mother and threatens Fanny if she refuses to marry the handsome but hollow fortune hunter (Alessandro Nivola) chosen for her by her benefactors. Playwright Harold Pinter is compelling as Mansfield Park's patriarch, Sir Thomas Bertram, capable of kindness but stone-cold when his aristocratic will is crossed. Embeth Davidtz (playing Mary, the amoral sibling of Fanny's suitor, with wonderfully seductive verve) and O'Connor almost resemble each other--and they are sisters of a sort, each vying, according to her talents, in a stock market where women must parlay sex to stay alive. In this entertaining ride in the socioeconomic fast lane circa 1806, Jane Austen comes across as a full-blooded proto-feminist with savvy charm.--Kathleen Murphy, Amazon.com
An entertaining film, but one wonders if the producers actually read Mansfield Park. Fanny Price is an interesting character; but not the Fanny Price of Austen. Read morePublished 2 months ago by Debbie Cox
Better than I expected - it's not close enough to the book and Fanny is likeable, which is just wrong! But as a period film on its own, I liked it. Better than Billie Piper...Published 4 months ago by DalyRae
Well worth the money. Excellent film for anyone who likes period dramas!Published 5 months ago by Mama
An entertaining version of Mansfield Park. If you want a true rendition of the book, try an adaptation series, this will not be for you! Read morePublished 7 months ago by cags63
unfortunately this DVD is not compatable with UK systems.Published 8 months ago by heather lynn brymer