Movie and Film Reviews (MFR) Drama,Romance Pride and Prejudice (2005)

Pride and Prejudice (2005)

Drama/Romance

Director: Joe Wright

Cast: Keira Knightley, Donald Sutherland, Brenda Blethyn, Jena Malone, Rosamund Pike, and Matthew Macfadyen

 

Based on Jane Austen’s well known novel Pride and Prejudice this story is about a family (The Bennets) who lived in England in the 1800s. With 5 daughters and no fortune Mrs. Bennet (played by Brenda Blethyn) is in a frenzy trying to marry each off before their father (played by Donald Sutherland) passes. Second in birth order Elizabeth (played by Keira Knightley) is a witty and out spoken young woman who feels a responsibility in keeping her younger siblings out of trouble, while also supporting her eldest sister Jane (played by Rosamund Pike), who needs to marry well to save the family from destitution. With each twist and turn each sister and their parents alike will learn more about themselves and how love comes in many forms.

The direction by Joe Wright is nothing less the perfection. He seamlessly pulls us in and we become first hand witnesses to private conversations, hiding just behind the shoulders of others in the room. A perfect example of this is Mr. Darcy (played by Matthew Macfadyen) and Elizabeth’s dance. As they dance in a crowed ball room you feel Elizabeth’s/Lizzie’s animosity and a growing discomfort in Mr. Darcy. As the dance progresses so to does the conversation between the two. Lizzie’s questioning of Mr. Darcy unexpectedly hits a nerve stopping both of them in their tracks. Mr. Darcy answers her numerous inquests, but Lizzie isn’t convinced. As they uneasily join back into the dance their tension seems to over take the soft music which fills the hall. Suddenly, after one graceful turn they both appear to be the only two in the ball room. Their gaze seems to lock on each others, but now you began to wonder if the passion hidden behind their eyes is one of disapproval or of a secret growing desire. Director Wright’s camera is an extension of his vision which enabling us the viewers to see emotions rising up in a character at one moment, and then at another we are pulled back in order to take in the beauty that surrounds.

The performers were so whole rounded that is hard to limit myself to only drawing attention to a few. Keria Knightly for example delivers an amazing performance. As Elizabeth Bennet she has captured Jane Austen view written almost 200 years earlier, which is not an easy task considering that Elizabeth Bennet is one of the most well known literary characters. Her witty portrayal hits the mark. Donald Sutherland was also one of my favorites as Mr. Bennet. A soft spoken father in a household over run with chatty females he embodies peace. This loving father figure shows that one can be strong while silent for he’s eyes spoke volumes. This role seemed to be a natural for Sutherland and though he’s character is sprinkle throughout the movie his importance is apparent.

This movie has the ability to transport you into a time and place very different from today with a simple idea, boy meets girl. Though it becomes must more complicated with numerous characters and personalities to keep track of the director has done a marvels job keeping things clear. Even the casting of this movie seems flawless. With well known and experienced actors performing next to some newcomers in the business you would never know it. Everyone stepped up and knocked it out of the park, so to speak. This film never seemed to cut corners, from shooting on location to costuming I found myself wishing I had been apart of it. In my mind this film will be considered a classic and rightly so. Not only do I believe you should watch this film, but it’s a must own. Make these characters apart of your family, and for a brief moment let yourself see the highs and lows first hand when living in a time of Pride and Prejudice.

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