8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Easy Viewing
Ive seen the Colin Firth film, read the book and also watched this version. The book is captivating, the Colin Firth film is probably the best re-telling available and an absolute classic for those who love period dramas, but this version has its own place. At 2 hours, it skims many plots and only touches on others, yet there's something about it and that leaves the...
Published 22 months ago by Kev Stock
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Disappointing
As a fan of pride and prejudice adaptions, I was quite eager to watch the newest adaption. However, I felt quite disappointed with the acting within the film and the general way they told the story. Some scenes were so poorly acted by both Matthew, who delivers one particularly awful line dreadfully ...'I.....love.....you.' His pretend stammer in this scene was...
Published 3 months ago by Lucy
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Easy Viewing,
Ive seen the Colin Firth film, read the book and also watched this version. The book is captivating, the Colin Firth film is probably the best re-telling available and an absolute classic for those who love period dramas, but this version has its own place. At 2 hours, it skims many plots and only touches on others, yet there's something about it and that leaves the viewer satisfied and feeling good. The piano scores that pop up throughout are fantastic, as are the stunning birdsong dawns and views across the pond. Keira Knightley plays the part of Elizabeth wonderfully well; her varied expressions, girle giggles and stubbornness of character bring the story to life. Yet there's something else too, just little things such as the servant ambling her way through the film singing to herself, the stark setting on the moor in Derbyshire, the vigor of the ball, the stuffiness of the Bennett house..... There's just something that makes this film feel as though you are watching through a looking glass rather than a tv screen.
Very funny, lavish and stunning to the eye. This is well worth 2 hours of anyone's life.
30 of 35 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "...So This Is Your Opinion Of Me..." - Pride & Prejudice on BLU RAY,
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This review is from: Pride & Prejudice [Blu-ray][Region Free]  (Blu-ray)
In order to have this movie in High Definition, I've had the HD-DVD format of it for a few years now - but it's an America issue and has the awful US ending. Now at last it arrives on BLU RAY in the UK (May 2010) and it's just as gorgeous a transfer. It uses exactly the same elements that the HD-DVD did - even the same menus - and the extras from the DVD are all intact also (with the US ending tagged on as an Alternate).
The improvement in picture quality is immense over the rather blurred DVD experience. As it opens with a misty dawn and the twitter of birds, we see the young and feisty Elizabeth Bennet (played with a magical touch and staggering assurance by Kiera Knightly) walking with a book. But it's not until she crosses the courtyard of her home that the real quality kicks in - and it's a wow. The picture takes you aback - it wasn't this good in the cinema I can tell you...
It isn't perfect throughout by any means though. Because they were going for authenticity, a lot of the early evening and dark night sequences are shot in candlelit rooms (as they would have lived), so you get fuzziness in the definition... But once you get out into the countryside or inside one of the great halls of stately homes - where proper lighting prevailed - the picture quality is beautiful. There is one famous dream sequence where only Kiera's closed eyes fill the screen - she is dreaming of standing on the cliff edge - the clarity is gobsmacking. You also notice the weave of the clothing, the dirt on the hemlines, the ever so slightly unkempt hair - the attention to detail is great.
Directed by Joe Wright and released in late 2005, the film version was living in the shadow of the legendary 6-part BBC production from 1995 - so the movie had a lot on its shoulders and admirably rose to the task. Another trump card was Dario Marianelli's lush piano score (Oscar nominated) swirling around the scenes like a graceful swan.
In the cinema, it was a delight to look and experience - but sitting at home and watching it in real definition is a far more rewarding and illuminating experience. The acting chops on display is right across the board and apart from a slightly jarring ending, it had the hallmarks of a shoot that was fun and supremely confident in its delivery. I know others will cite the BBC production as definitive - but I think there's more than enough room on my shelf for both.
Matthew MacFadyen, Brenda Blethyn, Rosamund Pike, Carey Mulligan, Judy Dench, Tom Hollander - they were a cleverly chosen cast - and Rupert Friend won the heart of the lovely Kiera (which might explain the ethereal beauty of her performance). But it's the stunning adaptation of Jane Austen's novel by DEBORAH MOGGACH that is the real hero of the day. There is a sequence when Elizabeth and Darcy finally face off against each other in the rain - the dialogue is to die for - and should have been Oscar rewarded. As a dabbler in screenplays myself, I can't stress enough just how good the work here is - dazzling stuff.
It's under a tenner, the extras are substantial, the picture quality is much improved and in some cases unbelievably so - and it's eminently re-watchable.
To sum up - if you're a fan of the film, Jane Austen or both - then you must own "Pride & Prejudice" on this format. A Blu Ray gem and highly recommended.
BLU RAY Credits:
VIDEO: 1080p High-Definition Widescreen 2.35:1 aspect
AUDIO: English DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1, Italian, Spanish, French, German and Japanese DTS Surround 5.1
SUBTITLES: English SDH, French, German, Italian, Spanish, Danish, Dutch, Finnish, Greek, Norwegian, Portuguese, Swedish, Japanese, Traditional Mandarin, Korean and Cantonese
Commentary with Director Joe Wright
Conversation With The Cast
Jane Austen, Ahead Of Her Time
A Bennet Family Portrait
Pride & Prejudice: A Classic In The Making
The Politics Of Dating
Alternate US Ending
The Stately Homes Of Pride & Prejudice
17 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This film opened my eyes to the book,
Pride & Prejudice - 2005 [DVD]I've seen numerous adaptations of this novel, all of them a bit stiff, and having also read the book, I really couldn't see why people thought it was such a great story. This film takes a light-hearted approach and having watched it and enjoyed it, I said to myself, "Yes, but the book's not that funny." I read it again and found that it was. I'd been looking at Jane Austen through the eyes of the learned professors who write long essays about her, suggesting that she was some earnest recorder of the mores of the period, when all she was trying to do was entertain her readers with social comedy. Rather than suffering from feminist depression because the highest ambition of most women then was to find some tolerable bloke to marry, she was having a good laugh at the antics they got up to in an attempt to secure such a marriage, and at how a woman who wanted to be a bit more picky could be considered over-ambitious.
This is hilariously depicted in the proposal scene between Elizabeth and Mr Collins, where he assumes that she will be grateful for his offer of marriage and that any resistance is due to her not wanting to seem "too easy". In fact, she'd rather live with the family dog in its kennel than with him. I know Mr Collins is a big oaf in the book, but Tom Hollander's version of him as a little creep works well, and Keira Knightley's face, showing horror and revulsion, is a picture throughout this scene, as is the despairing look of Talulah Riley, as Mary, at the end of it: "Why didn't you ask me?" she seems to be saying when Elizabeth has rejected him. Even Darcy has his funny side; his honesty is admirable, but when a man proposes to a woman by saying, "You're of inferior birth, your family is a disgrace, but I still want to marry you", that's taking honesty a bit too far. And the scene where Elizabeth learns of the elopement of her sister Lydia, with its potential to disgrace the whole family, is given an unusual comedy touch which I liked.
Of course, any two-hour film adaptation can only capture part of a novel (unless it's a very thin novel) but I felt that this one captured the spirit of it. Nobody does neurotic women like Brenda Blethyn, and as Mrs Bennet, she delivers a more complete character than we find in the book (not a bad thing) but Donald Sutherland gives us more of Jane Austen's Mr Bennet than most adaptations do. He's often depicted as a wise old owl in his study, when what he's actually doing in there is hiding away from his responsibilities.
I would suggest you approach this film with an open mind, rather than that of a Jane Austen anorak, and you will enjoy it.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Disappointing,
This review is from: Pride & Prejudice [DVD] (DVD)
As a fan of pride and prejudice adaptions, I was quite eager to watch the newest adaption. However, I felt quite disappointed with the acting within the film and the general way they told the story. Some scenes were so poorly acted by both Matthew, who delivers one particularly awful line dreadfully ...'I.....love.....you.' His pretend stammer in this scene was unnecessary and poorly acted.
In addition, I am normally a fan of Keria Knightleys films. However, in this film she did not bring Elizabeth's passion for life alive, not her witty comments.
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A great adaption,
This review is from: Pride And Prejudice [VHS] (VHS Tape)
Those who really love Jane Austen's book should be a little cautious if they think this adaption is going to be faithful to it. However, those with an open mind for visual adaptions and a love for romantic period dramas will love it. For me, this was a beautful adaption of the central theme of Pride and Predjudice, with all the sub plots neatly trimmed to fit into 2 hours. I loved the more earthy and less refined way it was filmed, allowing us to see more passion than the 1995 television adaption allowed. There will inevitably be comparisons to the 1995 adaption - but there shouldn't be. This was obviously filmed by a director with a very different perception of the novel and I for one, preferred his vision of it. The only drawbacks to this film are that some of the scenes do feel very rushed - almost as if the actors have been told to say their lines really fast; this does mean that some scenes that us true romantics love most of all, can leave the viewer feeling as if the scenes lack a bit of emotional depth sometimes. For example, the scene where Mr Darcy proposes to Lizzy in the rain - a wonderfully set scene, beautifully located in the rain with simmering passion in abundance, but the lines seem hurried rather than passionate and the viewer (who will always read reality between the lines of romance) will wonder whether Mr Darcy took to chasing lizzy through forests and hills before startling her in the palladian arch!
All in all, my only real concern with this film is how the director could have understood the book so well, but could have failed to realise why it is read so widely. I draw this opinion from the final scene, or lack of it. Where is it Joe? (and those of you who are looking forward to seeing the extra US scene where they kiss - prepare for a cheesy dissapointment, not a classy romantic conclusion which conveys the sublimity of such a moment). It has to be said, the 1995 version got the end right. It's all in the conclusion!
101 of 125 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Suprisingly beautiful and engaging,
By A Customer
First of all, I should say that like a previous reviewer, I was determined to find fault with this film, given that I am a huge fan of the seminal BBC version, and didn't think anything could come close. However, I rather grudgingly went to see it, and, suprise, suprise, loved it. The whole film has a much more earthy, organic feel to previous adaptions, which allows us to see the divide between the 2 families involved even more sharply. Given that the story has to be shortened to fit in with the time, this actually works to the films advantage, focusing almost exclusively on the main relationship; Elizabeth and Darcy.
One of the main reasons that I didn't want to like this film was Keira Knighley, as she usually irritates me and I don't like her acting that much! However, putting my prejudices aside, and sitting down to watch this film, she truly is the star, and puts on a wonderful performance as Lizzy; funny and engaging, and she deserves much credit for this.
The music is quite simply, glorious, and worth buying the DVD just to see/listen to it as intended, on screen.
I came out of the cinema feeling as though all was well in the world, and loved it so much I had to go back and see it the next week. A wonderful adaption, and will certainly be in equal standing with my BBC version in my DVD collection. (And I never thought I would write that!)
24 of 30 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Too rushed to give the novel credit!,
I thought the film was fair. I found it to be disappointing in it's portrayal of some essential main characters ie Wickham (who was heavily overlooked) and the casting left a lot ot be desired.
We are constantly reminded by Jane Austin that Elizabeth Bennett is feisty and opinionated but Keira Knightly's "Lizzie" was almost too opinionated in some scenes which left me, as the viewer, disliking her immensely--not quite the reaction one should have from one of literature's most loveable heroin's!!!
We never really get to see the wonderful relationship Lizzie has with her father and the closeness of Darcy and Georgiana--his sister. The elopment with Lydia and Wickham loses its intensity because of this and other factors.
I will definitely rate the BBC adaptation above this film for the quality acting and realism of Regency England.
12 of 15 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Better than expected, but BBC version still reigns supreme,
By A Customer
Like so many others, I wasn't keen on seeing this film, as the BBC version was so perfect that there seemed no possible way any other adaptation could hope to match it. I was partially correct: this film is not nearly so impressive as the 1995 series, but was still enjoyable in its own right. Kiera Knightly usually irritates me, and I don't rate her acting abilities very highly, but she did quite a good job here, although still looking too young and feeble for the confident, strong-willed Elizabeth Bennett. The rest of the cast all performed admirably, and although the story was necessarily truncated, it worked well enough. There's no doubt the BBC version will continue to be regarded as the definitive adaptation for many years to come, but I must admit this effort was better than I had expected.
35 of 44 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars As is the general feeling...,
By A Customer
Well, like most reviewers here I am unable to say much that is bad when it comes to this film. I have seen in 3 times so far (and am not generally prone to repeat viewings of films in the cinema) and will probably see it again (here in Austria it is still running in some cinemas, having been released on October 21st). I see A LOT of films and this is the first in a long time that I have really loved.
I have held back from giving it 5 stars as there were a few "stiff" points about the acting that irked me (Elizabeth's totally unconvincing tears upon receiving the news of Lydia for example) plus I found the scene where Lizzie finally accepts Darcy just a tiny bit overdone (if we're being picky). In general though I thought the casting and acting were very pleasing. Since the game here seems to be to compare to the BBC series, I will say that I thought Donald Sutherland's withdrawn Mr Bennett was more suitable than in the TV series where he struck me as much more assertive that he ought to be. I also liked Caroline Bingley much better (the costume department for the BBC version had her looking like a transvestite) and although Mr Collins was good in the TV version too, this one cracked me up! Like seemingly everyone else here, I was also dubious about Keira Knightly in this role, but as it turns out she did extremely well. I liked the way she played Elizabeth as much more of a tomboy than in the 1995 version, and although I had no real problems with Ehle's portrayal, I always felt she looked far to old for a girl of "not one and twenty". Finally, Mr Darcy! Like lots of people I had very romantic memories of Colin Firth in his wet clothes etc. etc. but having rewatched the BBC series at Christmas for the first time in eight years I found that my memory had been misleading me a bit - Firth was just OK, although any actor would have a job looking quite as smouldering as him! In particular, his delivery of the "dearest, lovliest Elizabeth" line stood out as completely unconvincing. That said, McFadyen's "I love-, I love-, I love you" got on my nerves the second and third times around. All in all, the new Mr Darcy is different, but does just as well and indeed better in places.
When it comes to the sets, I thought they were stunning. Perhaps the Bennetts should have been slightly more refined, but I was glad to see a house that befitted their status rather more that the all too grand home in the series. I adored the music too and have purchased the soundtrack - again, something which I don't generally do.
Finally, just on a point of information, quite a few reviewers have referred to the 1995 BBC version as "the original". Although I have seen no other adaptations, to my knowledge there is a 1940 film version with Greer Garson and Laurence Olivier. There are probably a few less well known adaptations in between and maybe even something earlier that I haven't heard of at all. It would be interesting to hear comparisons with some of these if anyone has any to offer.
19 of 24 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Not the real deal,
As other reviewers have noted this adaptation isn't a patch on the BBC's version or the novel. If you love the book I recommend you don't watch it at all!! The script is almost completely changed from Austen's glorious words, the actor who plays Mr Collins, although good in other roles (the BBC's adaptation of Wives and Daugthers springs to mind), isn't a patch on David Bamber's turn in the 1995 BBC version which was fantastic, and quite a few characters have been left out all together (Mr Bingley only had 1 sister according to this version, and Kitty's part is almost none existant). One thing that really bugged me is that they used Chatsworth for Pemberley. Yes, it looks great and it is a stunning house, but in the novel Lizzie and her aunt and uncle visit Chatsworth a few days before Pemberley!!! Also, the location in the BBC version just seems to fit Elizabeth's personality better. I couldn't imagine Keira with that hair (a bird's nest springs to mind)living there. Keira Knigthtly is alright, but she just isn't as talented as Jennifer Ehle, who IS Lizzie for me as much as Colin Firth IS Darcy. Another problem is that Mr and Mrs Bennett appear to get on quite well - they actually share the same bed and even a kiss in one scene!!! These are supposed to be probably the worsed matched couple in English literature, that rub each other up the wrong way consently, and possibly should never have married each other in the first place. Even the usually reliable Judy Dench cannot better Barbara Leigh Hunts Lady Catherine De Burgh. For me, the only performance I really liked was Rosamund Pike as Jane.
I know that the time limit (the BBC version is about 3 times longer) is one of the facters, but good film versions can be done - Sense and Sensibility is wonderful, and Emma with Jeremy Northam was also good - but this isn't one of them. Buy this only if you haven't seen the BBC version or read the book recently, otherwise it will just annoy you that it isn't much like either of them!
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Pride & Prejudice [DVD] by Joe Wright (DVD - 2011)
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