Run-On Sentence Reviews: Austenland

AustenlandIt is no secret that I am a Janeite, Austenphile, or whatever you want to call it (proof of which can be found here, here, here, here, and here) so of course this movie was made for the likes of me because it is about a girl who just can’t seem to separate fiction from reality and wishes that modern day romance was a little more like it is in an Austen novel and I know that any of my friends reading this are rolling their eyes because this could be my bio pic but I would like to point out that I am not nearly as pathetic as the heroine played here by Keri Russell but I would also spend way too much money to go to Austenland where one lives like an Austen heroine especially if said Austenland has JJ Feild as Mr. Henry Nobley (worth the price of admission) who makes a bad first impression on Jane (sound familiar?) and Bret McKenzie as Martin the stable boy.

Verdict: While this movie can be a bit too silly and a little over the top, I know that any fan of Austen is going to have a jolly good time watching it, even when it hits a little too close to home.

Ellen

Advertisements

Fangirly Investigates: How Many Adaptations is Too Many?

Pride and PrejudiceMy love of all things Jane Austen is well-documented and thorough, so it should come as no surprise to you that I recently spent a Sunday watching the 5 hour 1995 Pride and Prejudice.  Imagine my (non) surprise when this marathon viewing only fueled my urgency to watch the 2005 adaptation within the hour.

This is what I love about adaptations.  The 1995 version will forever be my favorite because of its fidelity to the novel, its general humor and lightheartedness, and the Colin Firth-iness of it all, but I cannot deny that the passion and sweeping romantic splendor that Joe Wright infused into his adaptation gets to me, despite some of quibbles with it.  For example, I become incensed when Charlotte Lucas lectures Lizzie about her plight in having to marry Mr. Collins and how upset she is because it zaps out every ounce of Austen’s commentary on that character, which is that women did that all the time back then and they were perfectly contented to do so.  I am willing to recognize, however, that this would have worked against the passionate, romantic vibe that Wright and co. were setting for the film.

It is due to this example and several others, that, in the opinion of this humble reader and movie-goer, one novel can never have too many adaptations.  As long as said adaptation is bringing something, anything, new to the table, it will always be valid.  I find it fascinating to see what tones directors set or what story arcs the writers decide to focus on.

I get the argument that Hollywood can’t think up any new ideas anymore and I get that you may not want to pay money to see yet another story that you have seen before. But I don’t think I want to live in a world where the possibility of new Harry Potters doesn’t exist, nor one in which a perfect adaptation of my favorite Austen work, Persuasion, can be produced.

What are your thoughts on adaptation? Is enough, enough?  Or do you feel as I do that the more the merrier?

-Ellen

MBK: Mr. Darcy, Mr. Tilney, and Captain Wentworth

The line between reality and television continues to blur as we bring you the next round of our never-ending game of Marry, Boff, Kill! This week we will be deciding the fates of our three favorite Jane Austen heroes: Henry Tilney (JJ Feild), Fitzwilliam Darcy (Colin Firth, duh), and Captain Frederick Wentworth (Rupert Penry Jones).

Whitney’s Answers:

jj-feild-henry-tilney-in-northanger-abbey-2008-x-350Marry Henry Tilney– I have not felt this kind of passion for a leading man since my Brendan Fraser phase in the late 90’s. And it’s not just because JJ Feild looks like Tom Hiddleston’s cooler older brother. Mr. Tilney embodies everything I look for in a man: funny, smart, gainfully employed, and wears breeches like he’s doing them a favor. Also, he seems like the most fun out of the three, a quality we value highly here at Fangirly. Right after raw animal magnetism, of course.

Mr. Darcy Colin FirthBoff Mr. Darcy- This is more of an obligatory boff, because my mother taught me that a lady must always boff Mr. Darcy, should the opportunity ever present itself. Also, Colin Firth is to sex appeal what Honda’s are to resale value: he never loses it.

tumblr_lj5wo4c7jA1qawq3lo1_400Kill Cap. Wentworth- For a while, Darcy and Wentworth were neck and neck for the coveted ‘boff’ position, until I remembered the horrific kissing scene at the end of the otherwise incredible drama Persuasion.

Really Captain, if it takes you that long to seal the deal on a kiss, I’m afraid I’m going to have to let you go. And, judging from what I just saw, I’d probably be putting you out of your misery.

Ellen’s Answers:

tilneyMarry Mr. Tilney – Well, at least Whitney and I can agree on something and that is the utter eligibility of one Mr. Henry Tilney.  This guy has it all, old school chivalry with all the modern sensibilities of charm, humor, and how to impress a lady by sharing her taste in entertainment (at least that works for me).  Mr. Tilney as portrayed by JJ Feild is even more marriage-worthy (Neve Campbell knows where it’s at).  While Mr. Darcy may have been my first Austen crush, my gateway hero, if you will, I’m sticking around for Mr. Tilney and his winning charm.

WentworthBoff Mr. Wentworth – I blame that kiss entirely on Anne.  He is letting her take the reins (even more hot). And have you SEEN him?!  He is described on the special features as being “sex on legs” and never will that  moniker be more appropriately applied.  But, Rupert Penry-Jones’ beguiling visage aside, Wentworth is a navy man and is probably accustomed to a quickie before leaving port. Wentworth is far too much of a gentleman to have been swayed by such temptations in the past, but in this MBK scenario, I would be that temptation.  And he would be scurvy and syphilis free, of course.

Colin-Firth-as-Mr-Darcy-mr-darcy-683507_1024_576Kill Mr. Darcy– As most of my “kills” do, this one kills me.  As I mentioned, Darcy was my first  love, but this Austen-lover has grown up and realized that she is looking for more than brawn with sideburns swimming in a lake.  I need someone with a little more personality.  Yeah, that house is hard to turn down, but who would want to clean that thing, or even oversee cleaning that thing?

Web Bytes: The Lizzie Bennet Diaries

LBD smallIf we haven’t already addressed it, you will soon learn that we here at Fangirly  love us some BBC period dramas. Bring on the high collars and sideburns. I myself wrote enough papers on Jane Austen in college to fill a sizable tome.  And it is safe to say that I have seen the five-hour miniseries of Pride and Prejudice at LEAST 20 times.  All components that lead to making The Lizzie Bennet Diaries the perfect candidate for our latest obsession.

LBD (as the cool kids abbrev it) is the modern-day vlog of, you guessed it, Lizzie Bennet.  Her sisters Lydia and Jane and friend Charlotte are all frequent guests and for a while Darcy was only heard of or seen through Lizzie’s less than flattering imitations. FINALLY, in episode 60 (yeah, 60!) he showed up to present his undesired proclamations.

This is an entertaining series and unique medium for one of my favorite stories.  Its been great fun to get a little taste every Monday and Thursday.  If I had to complain about anything it would be that it is taking them forever to get to my favorite part, but that is my complaint with the book and miniseries, as well. Luckily, it looks like my patience will be tried no longer as the tease for today’s episode was that Lizzie is touring a company by the name of Pemberley Digital.

Excuse me while I rush to YouTube…

You should, too.

Ellen