Much of the reason as to why this version of Persuasion works well lies with its talented cast. Rupert Penry-Jones, for instance, tackles the role of Captain Wentworth with skill, and Sally Hawkins too gives a performance to be admired. Backed by a primarily good supporting cast, the romantic drama is both watchable and engaging.
Inevitably, parallels are going to be drawn with the similarly strong 1995 television adaptation, and the truth is that some will favour one, some will favour the other. For our money, the earlier version just about nudges it, but the two takes on Persuasion both have enough ideas of their own to make them suitable companion pieces.
Diligently directed and suitably lavish to look at, Persuasion then shows little sign of dampening the enthusiasm for bringing Austen to screens of all sizes. And on the basis of the charming 93 minutes on offer here, thats no bad thing at all. --Jon Foster
Anne (Sally Hawkins) fell deeply in love with handsome young naval officer Frederick Wentworth (Rupert Penry-Jones) at the age of nineteen. But with neither fortune nor rank to recommend him, Anne’s family were against the match and persuaded her to break off the engagement. Eight years later, Anne has lived to regret her decision. She never stopped loving Frederick and when he returns from sea having made his fortune and reputation, she can only watch as every eligible young woman in the district falls at his feet.
Can Frederick forgive Anne for listening to her family instead of her heart?