Writer: Nurliana Kamaruddin
Writer Ratings:Overall: Cast:
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If Jane Austen was still alive, she would be on her feet clapping her hands enthusiastically once the credits for this movie rolls.
All right, perhaps I should not be so impudent as to dare suggest what Austen herself might have thought about this movie, but it is safe to say that THIS adaptation to the classic novel is most certainly a remarkably good one. Lively, witty and constantly mindful of its source material, director Joe Wright's version of "Pride And Prejudice" is most enthralling.
The cast and crew has infused a lot of heart into bringing the story to life and it's obviously seen in the ease the characters carried themselves, in the beautiful cinematography as the camera sweeps over lush English countrysides and in the script that reflects deep respect for Austen's novel.
Elizabeth 'Lizzie' Bennet (Keira Knightley) is the second of five siblings, all girls, from a middle class family in 18th century England. Their mother has but one conflict she resigns herself to and that is to marry off her five daughters to rich, amicable gentle men so when wealthy Mr. Bingley rents a neighbouring mansion, Mrs. Bennet is determined that he will marry one of her daughters.
With Mr. Bingley is his snobby sister Caroline Bingley and his best friend Mr. Darcy - handsome, rich and unapologetically proud. It was almost instant dislike for Lizzie when she met him, even more so when she overheard him commenting that she was 'not handsome enough to tempt him'. Of course, good natured Lizzie brushes off the remark easily but not without coming to the conclusion that Mr. Darcy was the most insufferable man she had ever met.
Watching "Pride & Prejudice" is a most entertaining ride, especially for fans of the novel. There's a sparkling wit about the characters, Elizabeth Bennet especially, and hearing favourite lines from the book delivered with much aplomb is most gratifying. Smart, sassy and fiercely independent, Kiera Knightley's Lizzie is the driving force of this movie. One cannot help but love her.
Of course, what's a heroine without her hero and Matthew Macfadyen as the proud but kind hearted Mr. Darcy is bound to get hearts a fluttering. Everything a dream gentleman should be, Macfadyen has a strong screen presence and chemistry between the two leads was splendid. The heart felt expression of love and of resentment as well between the two of them are some of the best scenes in the movie.
The only miscast throughout the movie was probably Mr. Bingley. Simons Woods as Mr. Bingley looked much too young next to Rosamund Pike's Jane Bennet. Still, this couple showed plenty off honest adoration for one another, not surprising since they are a couple in real life as well.
"Pride & Prejudice" is a most excellent way to kick start 2006.Cinema Online, 23 September 2008