Pride and Prejudice
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The timeless themes of love and marriage in Jane Austen's superb romantic comedy PRIDE AND PREJUDICE have captured readers for generations--the novel has sold more than 20 million copies and has never been out of print. Now, A&E and the BBC have brought this beloved classic to life in a compelling production directed by Upstairs, Downstairs' Simon Langton. This stunning production captures all the celebrated beauty of the English countryside and its glorious, stately manors. It features lavish costumes and an exquisite soundtrack from noted composer Carl Davis.
PRIDE AND PREJUDICE is the story of the lively and rebellious Elizabeth Bennet, one of five unmarried daughters living in the countryside of 19th-century England. In a world where obtaining an advantageous marriage is a woman's sole occupation, Elizabeth's independent manner threatens her family's future. Will her romantic sparring with the mysterious and arrogant Darcy end in misfortune--or will love's true nature prevail?
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 enjoy excellent Austen adaptations such as Sense and Sensibility and Persuasion--this miniseries will round out the ultimate Austen library. For those new to these romantic period pieces, this version of 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
- Featurettes: Lasting Impressions, An Impromptu Walkabout with Adrian Lukis and Lucy Briers, Turning Point, Uncovering the Technical Restoration Process
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And no advertising at the beginning - put it in and it starts.
I think they did a fantastic job restoring this, and this version has addressed the earlier complaints of the yellow or washed out color palate. I have also not noticed the deletion of any scenes from the original on video when it was first released. This is definately the version the collectors to keep.
FOR SOME REASONE AMAZON IS ATTACHING THE REVIEWS FOR THE 2001 DVD EDITION. THIS REVIEW IS FOR THE NEWLY RESTORED VERSION OF APRIL 2010.
This Keepsake Edition is pretty much the same as the above version except it has four more featurettes, which are cool and different packaging. The picture quality isn't improved over the previous version, it's the same quality. The one downer is the previous version defaults to the menu right away, while with the Keepsake version one has to watch a bunch of theatrical movie trailers before they can even get to the menu. This is a pain if one wants to watch the movie right away.
The four additional featurettes are cool and have a few short interviews with some of the cast like the actresses who played Jane Bennet, Susannah Harker and Polly Maberly, who played Kitty Bennet, that weren't interviewed in the featurettes of the previous BBC version.
I wish that they would have interviewed Colin Firth and Jennifer Ehle, both who were well cast and brilliant in their roles as Mr. Darcy and Elizabeth Bennet, but alas not to be with this Keepsake edition!
If you don't care about featurettes and have the previous BBC version your money would be wasted on this even at the excellent deal of under $14.00, which only a week ago was slightly under $15.00. However, if you love featurettes and don't mind wading through the trailers first before you get to the menu then this isn't a bad deal. You can keep the Keepsake for the more comprehensive featurettes and give away the prior edition or keep both, the prior for times when you want to go right to the menu.
The disks have the movie/show split up into 6 episodes, rather than playing as one continuous movie, and all start with the theme song and credits. You can also pick specific scenes.
I had a version before that blended all the episodes into one movie, which I think I preferred, but this works well too. The episodes are cut in good places so it doesn't feel strange to watch in segments, as I expected.
The show itself is done very well. I think they did an excellent job at choosing perfect actors and actresses for the characters. Also great costume designs, and encompasses a lot of things the book included.
The Restored Edition has additional behind-the-scenes. The changes in audio and video quality are very subtle to an untrained eye like myself. Since this was originally aired as a mini-series, this version has also "restored" the lengthy beginning and ending credits of each and every episode. This gives someone who wants to sit down and watch the story unfold without interruption left to feel like they're watching commercials.
The Special Edition is compiled to flow like a movie without interruption. However, it does have less behind-the-scenes. Additionally, if I had not been told, I would not have thought that the graphics or audio needed to be improved upon.
If you are not interested in the additional behind the scenes and would like to watch it as a movie, go with the Special Edition
If you prefer to have the additional behind-the-scenes or want to see the minor changes in audio and video quality and do not mind the interruptions of the credits, go with the Restored Edition.
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If you want to skip this review, just buy the previous version, (Cover shows: Darcy in the foreground, Elizabeth and Jane sitting down in...Read more