25 Aug 2011

mayoraasei: (Angry)
I hate myself for the curiosity that induced me to watch the Keira Knightley edition of Pride & Prejudice, thinking that since it's been years since I last saw her face (in Pirates of the Caribbean) perhaps I can get over her permanently Botoxed pout that reminds me so much of a certain Anoshito.

To start off the travesty, everyone speaks as though they've got a gun rammed up their asses and needs to get out their lines at twice the speed of comprehensibility so that they don't get shot. Can you understand, in those circumstances, how frightfully curt and pained they must sound?

The script runs like some high school kid's attempt at appropriating the great novel for an assignment and then ran out of time and copied&pasted the rest of the novel in. It is entirely not a coincidence then that the best lines are the novel's original. The rest of it is full of anachronistic and childish sentiments. "Don't you dare judge me, Lizzie." REALLY. Jane Austen can kill you with a pen.

Whoever wrote it had clearly not read the original. Neither, clearly, had the main actors. If Mr Bennet thought he had three of the silliest girls in the country in the novel, he has five of the stupidest, most ignorant and giggly girls in the country. Even sensible, kind Jane spent half her time giggling like an ill-cultured schoolgirl. Even Mr Bennet giggled in the end. UGH. And everyone in the bloody film appears to be in dire need of propriety. What does she mean to lope about in the countryside half dressed and alone before the crack of dawn??

And don't think you can distract me from the ludicrousness of the entire exercise by misty sunrises and twinkling piano music. If you can spend so much time filming landscape you could perhaps tell your actors to give situations their appropriate gravity. What does he mean by shooting out his confession (perhaps the most well-known confession of love in English literature) like he can't wait to get out of there and have a stiff drink???

I really liked Mr Bennet in the book. Oh, he's a terrible father, whose idea of education had been to allow his sillier daughters to expose themselves as much as possible in the hopes they could be burned by the exercise. He is a terrible husband, who trifles with Mrs Bennet for his own amusement. His sardonic good humour is what's been able to bear him through his life with such silly women, but it is also what brought about the predictable tragedy of Lydia's elopement, which served as a great lesson to him. None of this was present in the film.

Jane was supposed to be a sweet and gentle creature, possibly the ideal gentlewoman of her time. The film showed none of her kindness, her wish to forgive others for every fault, that set her apart from her sisters and made her union with Mr Bingley such a perfect fairytale. Mary spent all her time in front of the piano, without showing that it was motivated by an inferiority complex. Georgiana was again far too giggly and forward, she had none of the shyness that was mistaken for arrogance. Miss de Bourgh looked far too pretty and healthy.

And Lizzie is just a bitch. She is mean-spirited even in the book - not quite as vulgar as Lydia nor Kitty, but hardly as well-meaning as Jane - but she is NEVER outright rude unless someone has clearly overstepped decency to provoke her.

Darcy and Bingley might as well have been cast as trees for as much as I remember of them.

I am now going to rewatch the BBC version to wash my mind of this thing.

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