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43 of 44 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Living Austen
I am one of the handful of people who managed to miss Pride and Prejudice when it was on TV - it must have been the year I spent in a Mongolian cave - so it has been both a pleasure and a relief to finally see what all the fuss was about. It is, of course, as superb as most say it is, with particularly subtle performances by the always brilliant Colin Firth, nicely...
Published on 10 Oct. 2012 by GlynLuke

versus
0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Three Stars
Do not like the episodes would prefer a film
Published 3 months ago by Martina Green


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43 of 44 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Living Austen, 10 Oct. 2012
By 
GlynLuke (York UK) - See all my reviews
(TOP 100 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: The Best of Jane Austen [Pride & Prejudice / Sense & Sensibility / Emma / Persuasion] [DVD] [2007] (DVD)
I am one of the handful of people who managed to miss Pride and Prejudice when it was on TV - it must have been the year I spent in a Mongolian cave - so it has been both a pleasure and a relief to finally see what all the fuss was about. It is, of course, as superb as most say it is, with particularly subtle performances by the always brilliant Colin Firth, nicely oleaginous David Bamber as Mr Collins, and a quiet scene-stealer of a Mr Bennet from the versatile Benjamin Whitrow, all benign patience and serene sarcasm.
Unlike some viewers, I loved this version of Emma. Romola Garai is just right, with her unselfconsciously broad smiles, ready laughter, and terrible lack of both tact and self-awareness. Jonny Lee Miller convinces as a stolid, upright Knightley, and Michael Gambon is simply glorious as Emma`s fussing but loving father. Their very touching scenes together punctuate the story. Robert Bathurst and Rupert Evans are excellent in their roles, and there are two standout performances: by Louise Dylan as Emma`s `protegee` Harriet, who manages to flesh out a role which could have been somewhat two-dimensional into a funny and credible, if daffy, young woman itching to find Mr Right; and the gifted Tamsin Greig, who embodies the fluttery, talkative Miss Bates with exactly the right blend of qualities to move the viewer each time she appears. It`s a sublime piece of acting from this unique actress. Her flustered embarrassment at the picnic as the import of Emma`s insensitive remark dawns on her is a painful joy to behold.
If Persuasion is flawed, it is flawed for the best reasons. Some rail against Anne`s final run through the streets of Bath, for example, but to me it exemplifies her desperation and her last-ditch determination to escape her repressive family and claim the man she adores. It`s both cathartic and emotionally real. Sally Hawkins has the `jolie laide` appearance to a tee, and Rupert Penry-Jones is a shy, misty-eyed Wentworth. Great to see Alice Krige - in anything - and Anthony Head has a high old time as Anne`s father Sir Walter, in a role he obviously relishes.
The gem here is Sense and Sensibility. Andrew Davies has written a penetrating adaptation, and he is lucky to have two faultless performances by two young actresses as Elinor and Marianne. (As an interview in the Extras tells us, they saw many women before they cast these roles.) Hattie Morahan is soulful, heartrending and perfect as the cautious but likeable Elinor, and Charity Wakefield is a real find as her younger, flightier sister Marianne. Both are so good you want to stand up and cheer. They are utterly believable as sisters, too. Both have incredibly expressive eyes...indeed, so expressive is this whole production that one forgets the earlier Emma Thompson film - excellent though that was.
Janet McTeer is lovely as their mother, a pre-Downton Dan Stevens modestly dashing as diffident Edward, David Morrissey just right as Colonel Brandon, and Dominic Cooper (an actor I usually find all too resistible) is admirable as the romantic but duplicitous Willoughby. There`s also a wonderful turn by the Fast Show`s Mark Williams as Sir John Middleton, his ebullient good nature beautifully conveyed by this always watchable actor.
But it`s the sisters who are at the heart of this story, and the two actresses play them with, if anything, even more subtlety than Emma Thompson and Kate Winslet a few years before.
This is a most welcome box-set which I shall return to often, as much for certain moments and performances as for the stories being told.
Rewarding and warmly recommended.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Wet Shirt and others, 28 April 2014
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This review is from: The Best of Jane Austen [Pride & Prejudice / Sense & Sensibility / Emma / Persuasion] [DVD] [2007] (DVD)
I have at least 3 variants of each Jane Austen work on film of her novels, and of course this has Colin Firths masterpiece included, this pack is a quality item and at a fair price, one point worth mentioning is the version of Sense and Sensibility 2008 BBC, I always enjoy the different variations of these novels and this together with the Emma Thompson version of this film sits at the top end of all the offerings ( and includes another wet shirt ) but is otherwise quite faithful to the book, Andrew Davies doe,s edge towards the darker side of Marianne,s relationship with the dreadful MR Willoughby, and we are given a more accurate view of the £50.000 Miss Grey ( Far to attractive in the Emma Thompson version of the novel if she looked this good everybody would be chasing her), also included is the scene in which the drunken Willoughby is well and truly put down by Elinor Dashwood. In my opinion the ITV adaptation of Persuasion with Sally Hawkins is a story better told and with a far better cast than any other productions, and with a far superior picture and lighting to the alternative offerings of this novel, and as for the ending to the film it was said of Anne in Jane's novel at the end of the very last page ;she gloried in being a sailors wife;, so we must assume that the different closing scenes in the available D V Ds are a choice of each screen writers way of putting a tidy finish to the film, unless of course there is another version that I have not read. PS Jane did in fact rewrite the last chapters.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fabulous., 22 Feb. 2014
By 
M. Jones (UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Best of Jane Austen [Pride & Prejudice / Sense & Sensibility / Emma / Persuasion] [DVD] [2007] (DVD)
It keeps surprising me just how incredibly good Johnny Lee Miller is (have I spelt that right?). Everyone knows Jennifer Ehle and the other one, Firth something, did the definitive Pride and Prejudice, but fairplay, the others are damn good productions. Really pleased with this. Husband asks me if I want petticoats if am generally feeling a bit crud. Yes I say, petticoats, and out this comes, with a cocoa or wine or wine followed by cocoa followed by more wine.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Stunningly good, 22 Aug. 2013
By 
DCliffe (Cornwall UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Best of Jane Austen [Pride & Prejudice / Sense & Sensibility / Emma / Persuasion] [DVD] [2007] (DVD)
Thoroughly enjoyed Pride & Predudice which we missed when it was first broadcast in the UK because we were out of the UK at the time.. It is hard to imagine how this production could be improved upon. We have yet to view the other DVDs in this set.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I love it, 9 Aug. 2013
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This review is from: The Best of Jane Austen [Pride & Prejudice / Sense & Sensibility / Emma / Persuasion] [DVD] [2007] (DVD)
perfect in every way lovely quality DVD's good productions from the BBC. I would totally recommend this to any Jane Austen fan
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best of the Best, 23 April 2013
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This review is from: The Best of Jane Austen [Pride & Prejudice / Sense & Sensibility / Emma / Persuasion] [DVD] [2007] (DVD)
If you enjoyed the television series of these Austen books then this is the perfect DVD. Recommend to any Austen fan.
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15 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars the best of jane austen, 16 Sept. 2011
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This review is from: The Best of Jane Austen [Pride & Prejudice / Sense & Sensibility / Emma / Persuasion] [DVD] [2007] (DVD)
excellent to have all 4 of my favorite jane austen film s together like this superb quality , thank you once again ,10 out of 10
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Austen box set, 30 Jan. 2015
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This review is from: The Best of Jane Austen [Pride & Prejudice / Sense & Sensibility / Emma / Persuasion] [DVD] [2007] (DVD)
All four of the best of Austen in one box. Although, I did prefer the Amanda Root version of persuasion the version in the box was still very good. I love the version of Emma with Johnny Lee Miller it was better than the film. Sense and sensibility was worth a look too.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Very Good Value, 6 Mar. 2013
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This review is from: The Best of Jane Austen [Pride & Prejudice / Sense & Sensibility / Emma / Persuasion] [DVD] [2007] (DVD)
Just happen to like these 4 Jane Austen stories and especially the Pride and Prejudice version with Colin Firth (who does'nt)
So was pleased when they all came together in one box. Prompt delivery and good quality, very happy with purchase.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Loved this series!, 21 Mar. 2014
By 
Ruth Garratt (Sydney NSW Australia) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Best of Jane Austen [Pride & Prejudice / Sense & Sensibility / Emma / Persuasion] [DVD] [2007] (DVD)
The Brits know how to do a great period drama! And you can't go wrong with Jonny Lee Miller and Colin Firth! Excellent series!
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