If I look like a zombie today

It's because I was up till 3:00am. Ever since Tusk mentioned ITV's Jane Austen Season in the UK I've been dying to see what they're up to. They've redone Persuasion, Mansfield Park, and Northanger Abbey. (They're also showing the 1996 Emma starring Kate Beckinsale before all the plastic surgery and tanning--back when she was cute.) I cursed my fate as one who now dwells on the absolute wrong side of the pond.


It turns out that there are wonderful people out there who have already put all three of them up on YouTube. I love you, wonderful people! After reading Tusk's review of Persuasion I couldn't resist checking it out. And once I did I couldn't stop.

First off, I love the story of Persuasion. And now that I'm an old maid of 27, like its heroine, I can identify with it a bit more than I could back when I was 18 and thought 27-yr-old single LDS women (if such things existed) were probably rounded up and shipped off to some failure farm in the desert.

Basic synopsis: Nineteen-year-old Anne is persuaded to call off her engagement to Captain Wentworth because he's this young sailor with no money and no future and it's the middle of a war. Eight years later, after no contact, they end up back in the same social circle. She's still single, knows she passed up her chance for happiness, and has resigned herself to a life of spinsterhood looking after the selfish pack of freakshows that is her family. He's now rich, eligible, sought-after, and completely bitter towards poor sweet Anne. Did I mention that he's hot? Because he is. But of course he still loves her, and of course they eventually end up back together. And of course I totally cried at the end.

As an adaptation I don't think it quite holds up to the 1995 Ciaran Hinds version--lots of things get left out. But the music and scenery are lovely and the acting is great. The leads are younger, which better represents their ages in the book. I really liked Sally Hawkins as Anne Elliot. I would never call her plain or aged-looking, but she has an expressive face that lets you know what Anne is going through.

As for Captain Wentworth, Oh. My. Gosh.

was the reason I was up till 3:00am with a heaving bosom. I don't even go for blond men, but I will make a big, big exception for my new friend Rupert Penry-Jones. At one point he and Anne stared at each other all close-up and I may have possibly shouted "Oh my gosh make out. Make out! Make out make out make out!!" because I just could not stand the tension and the hotness and my brain was about to explode. Seriously. I'll be watching that one over and over again just for him.

In the beginning Anne tells Lady Russell (the one who persuaded Anne to break off the engagement) that she would have been happy if she had gone ahead and married Capt. Wentworth all those years ago. Lady Russell tries to give Anne the "Hey, you're young and pretty and will definitely find someone one of these days" pep talk. But Anne just gives her this sad smile and says, "I'm twenty-seven years old." Bwah hah hahah! And Lady Russell is all, "Yeah, true point. You're screwed and I'm talking out my ear."

So now I think anytime people ask me if I'm dating anyone, I'll answer with a sad, brave smile and say, "I'm twenty-seven years old."

And that will be the end of the conversation.


lilcis said... [reply]

27 is how old I was when I met my husband . . 28 when we got engaged, and 29 when we got married. And I'll probably be 34 by the time we have a kid. So, you know, there's still hope.

Jenny said... [reply]

I wonder what it is about chaste movies that make me scream at the TV for the characters to behave in ways that would for sure tarnish their reputations and involve fornicating and or adultery. Like Mr. Rochester and Jane. Oh. My. Gosh. Because normally I wouldn't go for that.

nomadic gnome said... [reply]

I just emailed my IT guy at work to come and install flash drive on my computer. I need youtube access. This can't wait 3 more hours, must have it now.

kristen said... [reply]

I just bought the book; it is one of the Austen books I haven't gotten to yet. Will; read; SOON. Can't wait.

Oh, and that guy is totally hot. Any way we can get a hard copy of that movie?

Nemesis said... [reply]

Kristen, the rumor is that it will air the US in the fall, and then I guess the DVD will come out afterwards. If you can't wait, (which, Hi, I can't) watch it on YouTube. They've uploaded it in about 11 shorter clips and the picture is decent.

Panini said... [reply]

I was up then, too. I'm so glad you put this up here. I didn't know it was on UTube.
p.s. I took some canyon pictures you might like.

Carly said... [reply]

I too laughed at the irony of being 27 and single. But I'd rather be 27 and single today than back in J.A's day (much as I'd love to be back in her day). I can at least work to support myself...

Also, the new Northanger Abbey adaptation is wonderful! I think I liked it even better than Persuasion, but it is one of my favorite books. I liked how the actors in that movie were also age appropriate, and hot. Henry Tilney is my new hero. But I must agree with you, best part of Persuasion is the hotness of Capt. Wentworth!! Oh and you should watch the music videos that the user who posted the movies made, they are a lot of fun: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=32lrRMw1GG4&eurl=

Tusk said... [reply]

I'm so glad you got to watch it! And I'm so glad at least one other person cried watching it, because until now I was the only one I knew.

.....And we were screaming at the TV too.

scienceteachermommy said... [reply]

I actually really like blonde men. In fact, before I met plant boy every boy I was really attracted to was blonde and/or balding. Plantboy has a full head of dark hair that is going gray so who could have guessed that?

And was Kate Beckinsale EVER cute?

Next time I go to the library I am going to yours and then I'm just going to let my kids run amock. Then I will have something inane to gossip about as well.

Lindsay said... [reply]

You crack me up! You had me giggling like a school-girl through this entire post, and you just may have persuaded me to give Jane Austen novels another chance. Go you.

Rachel said... [reply]

Helloooooo, Rupert Penry-Jones!!!!

Sigh. I'm almost 27. I guess I should start saving up for my ticket to the failure farm in the desert...

daltongirl said... [reply]

May I correct you? They've uploaded it in ten shorter clips. So after you watch them and you're crying, and your heart's pounding all hopeful as Anne is running down the street after Frederick, you try to access the end of the movie (clip 11) and you get this stunning little message that says they've removed it due to copyright infringement or something.

And then you sit there just stunned.

So thanks for that. I could have waited until fall . . .

I don't blame you, Nem. But I am bitter. Bitter and hurt.

daltongirl said... [reply]

And if I can get past my bitterness long enough, I will say that even with missing the last seven CRITICAL minutes of the movie, I loved Sally Hawkins, if only for the fact that she didn't stare so creepily. But also because she made me cry multiple times--not just at the end.

And you know how I feel about Ciaran Hinds. Excellent actor, but not hot at all. So this version worked out very well for me.

Except for that one thing. Okay, I'm going back to being bitter now.

Nemesis said... [reply]

The crap????? Okay. Try this. And then this. It's not perfect but it's something! Holy crap. Darn you YouTuuuube!!

Azúcar said... [reply]

Rupert Penry-Jones: been a fan ever since he replaced Matthew MacFadyen in MI:6/Spooks.

Can't wait for the new adaptation of Persuasion.

Tusk said... [reply]

Yes, it seems Spooks is the spawning ground for Regency Hunks. ;)

Sarita said... [reply]

For the love.....

I am aching to watch. NOW.

And so look forward to joining the ranks of spinsterhood at 27 next week.

Jenna L said... [reply]

According to the word on the internet street, the new Northanger Abbey, Persuasion, and Mansfield Park will air on Masterpiece Theater in November. They will also be showing the new Sense and Sensibility which is currently being made by the BBC. The belief is that the DVD's will be made available in Region 1 after they are shown on PBS. The Region 2 DVD's are of course available now. Here is a link for a post at austenblog.com that has more information about all 4 movies being in the US. (Note: this post was made before the shows aired in the UK)

I'm glad that you found the movies on Utube. They were fun to watch. I particularly liked Northanger Abbey since there is not (in my opinion) a valid adaptation of that movie. And I agree with you 100% about the new Captain Wentworth. He was very dreamy.

sakhmet said... [reply]

Gah! I know I'll be run off this blog on a rail, but Persuasion is my LEAST favorite Austen novel. I mean, really: it's been eight years and they resolve the conflict by a mere glance across the sitting room? What. Ever.

Katie said... [reply]

Daltongirl: I was also very bitter after watching 10 episodes and then not being able to watch the final part. Good news though. You can watch that last part under "Persuasion-Last Part" I guess the poster just altered the title and now it's up. Happy watching!

Nemesis: Have you seen "North and South"? I have a feeling you would love it :)

Jimmy said... [reply]

I was 27 93 years ago. It does get better!

I don't think you were supposed to make me laugh with this entry, seeing that it was a review and all, but those last couple of sentences did me in, again.

If it makes you feel better, 27 was practically middle-aged back in Jane Austen's day, right? Now, 27 is just on the verge of being an awesome 30 year old.

I'm working on getting slapped, aren't I. I better stop.

chosha said... [reply]

I think I just broke my downloading rule about movies...let's hope the DVD comes out soon so I can buy it before I go to hell.

Nemesis said... [reply]

No, Chosha, I promise this is okay. Because it's like that nice UK girl is lending us her copy, see?

And it's also free publicity for the Masterpiece Theatre premieres in the fall (here in the USA, at least)and the DVD releases. Because really, YouTube with its dinky little screen isn't enough for a true fan--it just whets our appetites for the real thing.

You like that? I've got more.

TheMoncurs said... [reply]

I've kind of hidden the fact that I'm a rabid Jane Austen fan from my husband because he tends to mock me when I sit there and bawl at girly books and movies, but last night I told him he was fending for himself because if he didn't leave me alone with youtube all night there would be death and destruction.

Thank you for making my month!


Th. said... [reply]


We just watched it and I think if I hadn't read and loved the book I barely could have even followed the story. I did like it and I thought the leads were great but it felt so . . . rushed. Why only one hour? It's her best book!

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