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Customer Review

44 of 47 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Love Austen? You'll love this..., 17 July 2006
This review is from: Emma [DVD] [1996] (DVD)
How do you sucessfully condense the masterpiece that Emma is into less than two hours? Although they have incredibly truncated the story and took some great liberties here and there, they have managed to do it. The essence and spirit of the story is not only left intact, but emphasised in exactly the points where it carries the most weight. So much better than the Paltrow version, where Emma's elegance, and not her ignorance, seems to be given more attention. Although I love Toni Colette, Samantha Morton was also a much more convincing Harriet Smith. I haven't really liked Kate Beckinsale in anything else I've seen her in, but here she's perfect (although not as conventionally 'beautiful' as you might expect). Her arrogance, on the other hand, is spot on. It makes the moment where she is standing by the window realising (tears coursing down her cheek), "I love him. I've always loved him," an incredibly humble and emotional acknowledgement - and victory - for both her and the viewer. And that's what it's supposed to be. My only complaint is that Knightly has been made a bit too explosive, especially in the first scene where he confronts her about her interference between Harriet Smith and Robert Martin. In the book, he's not a guy who runs 'hot' in his feelings. Which is why it perhaps took them so long to acknowledge what was between them. They took it a bit too far. But that is a minor complaint from a very demanding Janeite who otherwise found it an extremely satisfying (and that is saying a LOT) film version of Emma, that I'm sure I will watch time and again (with anyone else I can force into it :)
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Location: Utrecht Netherlands

Top Reviewer Ranking: 270,931