Monday, January 14, 2008

Jane Austen junkies, unite!

Perhaps some of you are already aware that Jane Austen Season has come to America in the form of Masterpiece (apparently it's just called "Masterpiece" now, not "Masterpiece Theatre) on PBS.


I caught the last half of "Persuasion" tonight and it was even better than when I watched it on YouTube last spring.

There is one thing, though: if I am not mistaken, they shortened the kiss scene for the airing on PBS. Did anyone else see the original British broadcast and if so, can you confirm this?

Here is the video of the original to compare.

The other two new adaptations that I've seen are "Northanger Abbey" and "Mansfield Park." I watched "Northanger Abbey" on YouTube as well. It is definitely an accurate interpretation of the book - suitably lighthearted and mocking.

"Mansfield Park" was another YouTube experience from last spring. Enjoyable. But if you're only going to allow one film adaptation of Mansfield Park in your life, it should be the 1999 version.



Jen said...

I'm only 3/4 through the book, so I recorded the show last night. I'm reading the book as fast as I can!!!!!!!!! I cannot wait. It's a giddy time for me.

Suzanne Bubnash said...

We watched Persuasion last night & liked it, not loved it. On the plus side I liked this Captain Wentworth much better than the movie version's Ciaran Hinds--he bugs me.

On the down side I didn't feel last night's version gave enough depth to the characters; in other words, Ann didn't show quite enough personality to recommend herself to Cap. W., nor him to her except for his good looks. Ann was cast a little too plainly. And the whole film had a washed out look to it. But I am looking forward to Northanger Abbey next week; I haven't read it for twenty years so will try to skim back through it before the program airs.

Nemesis said...

Great minds, Bridget. Great minds. :-)

Craig said...

The kiss scene was about five seconds shorter (from her last word until lips first touched) with the aired version Sunday. A clear difference is in the aired version you don't see the origination of the tear that runs down her cheek.

I agree with Suzanne's comments.

In this version events in Bath were too rushed compared to the movie. And I liked the scene and music much better in the concert scene of the movie.

Bridget said...

Thanks, Dad. I'm not the only one out there who noticed (see Miss Nemesis' blog for more details and outrage).

The timing of the tear falling down her cheek is what tipped me off to the cut in the first place.

Danny and Julee George said...

Bridget, your post reminded me that I was always curious about "Persuasion" so I rented the 1995 version with Cairan Hinds. I only got an hour into it and dreaded that whole hour. Is it just me or is that movie horribly made??? I really don't know. Is that the original you are referring to? Anyway, Suzanne's sentaments about the recent version echo mine of the '95 film. I didn't feel (substitute 1995 version) gave enough depth to the characters; in other words, Ann didn't show quite enough personality to recommend herself to Cap. W., nor him to her except for his good looks. Ann was cast a little too plainly." I felt they were all cast very plainly... I could hardly stand to watch an hour of it. I guess I am just as shallow as Hollywood:) I can't remember how many times I wished, of the new version of "Pride and Prejudice", that Mr. Darcy was cuter. Where do I get my hands on the new version or should I just read it?

Bridget said...

Julee, the first time I saw the Ciaran Hinds version, I don't think I understood a single word that was said. It's so quiet and muted.

Then I watched it again with subtitles (I am being completely serious) and I LOVED it. So maybe you should give it another try. Or maybe it's just a matter of taste.

Unless PBS decides to air the new version again soon, I think it's only available on DVD.

Crys said...


Jason is downstairs watching Heroes (yes we are talking season one DVDS) so I watched Persuasion on youtube. For me personally I loved it...especially that little tear running down her check before the freaky kiss. Anyway for me personally I liked plain Ann and I think they showed how reliable, loving, tolerant, just plain wonderful she was especially compared to everyone else. As for Wentworth....well he was lovely to look at :) Oh well I guess I'm going to have to go downstairs and watch some heroes if I want some ice cream. Thanks for the suggestion though. I'm going to watch Northanger Abbey tomorrow night!


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