Thursday, October 29, 2009

Emma - BBC style

Yet another testament to the fact that I can and will watch anything Austen. And try my best to enjoy it. I didn't try too hard in this case. BBC's latest version of Emma, though not their greatest work, is a visually pleasing watch for any Austen fan. Honestly, the first thing that strikes me when I sit to review Emma is the fact that the cinematography was beautiful. And the music. And the costumes.

The actors now: Romola Garai - I think she made a brilliant Emma. Very close to the feisty, very flawed yet lovable Emma that I imagined when reading the book ( After watching this film, a reread is in order!). Jonny Lee Miller's version of Mr. Knightley is quite endearing and I think he can safely pull-off 'chivalry', while Louise Dylan's Harriet is apt. The best performance in my opinion, came from Tamsin Greig as Miss Bates - she was perfect. I didn't particularly like Frank Churchill or Jane Fairfax, but I can put up with them. The Eltons are fabulously comic while the Westons are great in their roles.

Every version of an Austen novel has its own special scene. If I had to pick my favourite scene from this version, it would definitely be Mr. Knightley asking a lonely, deserted Harriet to dance with him. You know what's going to happen, of course, but I thought that scene was set up beautifully and continued very much 'in character' as Harriet jumps up, rushing to dance, a broad smile on her face, while Knightley pulls her back and asks her to wait for their turn =)

I haven't seen the other versions of Emma so I cannot pick a favourite, but this one was definitely worth watching and I enjoyed it. Even if there wasn't anything that stood out for its brilliance, nothing quite does it like a good old, Austen romance, BBC style.

This makes it 7/12 in my Extended Austen Challenge


Paperback Reader said...

I'm currently watching this on BBC iplayer (watched two, two to go) and thoroughly enjoying it and think it is well done, if slightly jarring in its language. This is also the only Emma adaptation that I have seen so I can't compare and it makes me want to reread the novel too!

vvb32 reads said...

i like that picture of emma and mr. k. looking forward to seeing. i still have to read the original. the gwyneth paltrow version is the only one in my head which i liked.

Kals said...

Paperback Reader - I'm glad you're enjoying it! Maybe we could discuss and contrast the film with the book after a re-read =)

Velvet- I haven't seen the Gwyneth Paltrow version though I've heard its great. I'll check it out soon =)

Heather G. said...

Definitely take a gander at the other versions. My fave is the Gwyneth Paltrow version, but the other one with Kate Beckinsale is still quite good! I can't wait to see this in the US we have to wait for some BBC!

Kals said...

Oh, I'm looking forward to watching these versions, along with 'Clueless'. I haven't watched that either and all of my friends think it is a sacrilege that I haven't watched such a 'fun adaptation'! =)

couchpapaya said...

Ok, I'm spending a lot of time procrastinating and browsing over your past posts ... they're so much fun and I still see so many I want to read! Re. Emma, like you mentioned I loved this version for the costumes/hair/makeup (and Dumbledore actually acting in character for once heh). Everyone looked divine. But, if I had to pick my fav version I would say the Kate Beckinsale one, but my favorite Mr. Knightley is Jeremy Northam from the Gwyneth Paltrow one. Clearly I spend a lot of time watching Austen :D

Kals said...

"Clearly I spend a lot of time watching Austen :D"
You ought to be so proud of yourself for that :D

I totally agree about Dumbledore acting in character for once and I'm flattered that you love my posts :)


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