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Pride and Prejudice (Special Edition) [DVD] 
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The bicentennial production of Jane Austen's novel is given the most lavish treatment yet, in this acclaimed television mini-series. Pride and Prejudice stars Jennifer Ehle (Possession) as Elizabeth Bennet, a witty and headstrong young woman in 19th century England. When she meets the standoffish Mr. Darcy (Colin Firth), they initially clash, but there may be something deeper behind their animosity. Firth (Bridget Jones' Diary) sets the standard for period film heroes with his portrayal of Mr. Darcy, a character sure to make both minds and hearts race. The classic novel of manners, society, and love includes much of Austen's rich commentary on human nature, and features extensive, gorgeous location shooting in and around historic English country homes.
- 'Making Of' featurettes
- Character biographies and profiles.
Jane Austen's classic novel of 1813, Pride and Prejudice, still wins the hearts of countless schoolgirls with its romantic story of Elizabeth Bennet and her Mr. Darcy. Now, the 1996 BBC miniseries is winning over adults, with its faithful adaptation, gorgeous scenery, and superb acting.
The essence of the story is the antagonism between Mr. Darcy, a wealthy single man who believes Elizabeth to be beneath him, and Elizabeth, who upon being insulted at a dance by the aloof Darcy refuses to associate with him in any manner. Austen evokes incredible tension with the wit and flirtation of the two characters, and director Simon Langton (who also directed Upstairs Downstairs) successfully translates the repartee and conflict in this six-hour miniseries. Dialogue, for the most part, is painstakingly replicated, except when fleshing out and smoothing for modern sensibilities was necessary. Darcy, for instance, is drawn out, giving his personality significantly more depth. The acting sweeps you away to Regency England: Jennifer Ehle (of Wilde) is convincing as the obstinate Elizabeth, who, despite her mother's attempts to marry her off, spurs the attentions of Darcy. And Colin Firth (of The English Patient) will have women everywhere longing for a Mr. Darcy of their own.
For those who have been on an Austen binge--enjoying such excellent adaptations as Sense and Sensibility and Persuasion--this miniseries will round out the ultimate Austen video library. For those new to these romantic period pieces, Pride and Prejudice will have you hooked and longing for more. One caveat, however: plan to watch it in an entire day, because very few have the self-control to not watch all six hours in a single sitting. --Jenny Brown (Amazon.com)
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The two main actors Collin firth who plays Mr Darcy & Jennifer Ehle who played Elizabeth Bennet are the personification of the characters Jane Austin created adding a movie star quality to the series along with many other notable performances.
The sets, the costumes, the musical score, the story add to this magical world in literately history, arguably this is the best adaption of a pride & prejudice and Collin firths stand out role that was one of the main reasons he was cast in Bridget jones dairy as a modern day Mr Darcy.
Lovers of Jane Austin will find this a classic tale well deserved of praise both for the cast and the production values by the BBC.
Delivery was flawless as usual; package was dreadful as usual....
....And probably ruined the item - I finally got to (re-)watch it but, after taking the disc out one time, it does not play the disc which gets ejected.
I also liked the way Darcy - played superbly by Colin Firth by the way! - was given more attention than just appearing occasionally at the scene. This way we were more familiar with his character, actions and his feelings for Elizabeth. As a result the surprise element is not so significant of course, but it did not lessen the merits of the production.
Costumes, music, buildings and scenery were absolutely fantastic. They were not simply objects and background, they also disclosed a lot of useful information about the characters (e.g.: Darcy is wealthy, but has taste, lady Catherine is wealthy and pompous, Elizabeth is not very rich, but is natural and unpretentious...).
The actors were also very good, although I have to admit that I thought Jennifer Ehle miscast as Elizabeth Bennet: she seemed too experienced, too knowing for a twenty-odd something-year-old girl. At times she was simply impertinent instead of daring and she just SMIRKED instead of smiling playfully. Thus Darcy appeared a far more positive character to me right from the start despite his aloof behaviour. Elizabeth Garvie in the '79 version as Elizabeth was absolutely fantastic.
And there was another miscast character: Wickham. He was just too slimy. I mean, he IS slimy all right, but in the beginning Elizabeth and the audience shouldn't know that. He should appear as a much more attractive person compared to Darcy. Adrian Lukis couldn't do that, he was a bit repulsive right from the start. So I was left with the feeling "how could Lizzy fall for this guy's charm even for a second?!" You aren't supposed to feel that from the start, you shouldn't be thinking, even as a spectator, that Elizabeth must be really foolish to like this guy instead of the charismatic and sexy Darcy!
All in all, if you love the book, you are going to like this adaptation very much.
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