Thursday, August 5, 2010

Pride & Prejudice (1995) and Pride & Prejudice (2005)

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Pride and Prejudice (1995)
My score: 3.5 stars out of 5

I'm particularly biased to the Pride and Prejudice (2005) version starring Keira Knightley just because I loved her as Elizabeth Bennett.

At the beginning of the 1995 version, I kept comparing Keira Knightley to Jennifer Ehle, but after a few episodes (since the 1995 version was meant for TV) noted that they both had successfully portrayed Elizabeth Bennett in their own acting style.

I knew the 1995 version was considered a classic (note references to it in Lost in Austen), but would have to go with the 2005 version.

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Pride and Prejudice (2005)
My score: 5 of 5 stars

I loved the cast, the quick pace of the movie, the simple yet insightful vignettes in the 2005 version. (Remember the panning of the camera as it encompassed the whole house of the Bennetts, showing how the maid climbed up the stairs, to the room of Kitty and Lydia, to the room of Elizabeth and Jane?) I loved how the dialogue was delivered, the acting, the direction, everything.

There were parts of the TV series that I cringed and needed to get some getting used to. Still can't get over the actress they cast to play Jane. Kept comparing her to the Jane in the 2005 movie. The relationships between Jennifer Ehle as Elizabeth and her sisters was somewhat undeveloped and reserved. Even her relationship with her dad isn't as heartwarming as in the 2005 movie.

The 2005 movie's Lydia definitely got under my skin that if I were Elizabeth Bennett, I might have strangled my own sister.

I came away from the 1995 TV series just seriously loving Colin Firth and Jennifer Ehle, but not any of the other actors/actresses.

In a story where the relationships between the sisters and the whole Bennett family are so central to the story, I would have to go with a version where the entire cast was stellar, rather than just the two leads.

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