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Saturday, August 11, 2012

Pride and Prejudice Comparisons: Part 4

Scenery



1995

Miss Woodhouse:   Nothing popped out at me in the scenery for P&P 1995.  It’s just typical English verdue.  However, much of the film is shot indoors.
Miss Laurie:  Every scene is quite picturesque. I love seeing all of the fine country houses and the beauty of the English countryside. Indoors the scenes are decorated with layers of elegant furnishings and fabrics.
Amy:  Very nice indeed, and I got a real feel for the English countryside and buildings.
Lizzie:  The locations are great. My favourite place would have to be the Peak district. The places they chose are beautiful and the views are great! I also like the scenery around Rosings and the parsonage, where she runs into Darcy and where he gives her the letter. My favourite house would be Pemberley. The first time Lizzy, and we, see Pemberley, it looks stunning! The lake so perfectly situated! I also love Longbourne in this adaptation and Rosings was very impressive, especially on the outside. I like the scenes showing Darcy striding though London searching for Lydia and Wickham, the scenery of old London seemed well thought about.  

2005

Miss Woodhouse:  Wow, just wow!  The scenery in this adaption is breathtaking.  ‘Liz on top of the world’?
Miss Laurie:  It shows a dirtier and muddier England than most Jane Austen adaptations. Outdoor scene seem fairly damp in most places. The Bennets live on a dirty farm that is as messy inside as it is outside. Balls are very cramped. Pemberley is quite a lovely house inside and out and Netherfield Park is fairly grand as well.
Amy:  Stunning, gorgeous, sweeping, sigh-inducing, made me want to pack up and move to England without further ado.
Lizzie:  I LOVE all the scenery and locations in this one! Firstly houses, Pemberley is gorgeous... enough said. I love Netherfield, the outside is lovely (and I live 20 minutes away from the house which ‘played’ it so it will always be special to me ;)) Also, Longboune was great, the opening shot of it made it seem like a really friendly house. Now for scenery, I love the setting of the opening shot with Lizzy reading the book at dawn, such a beautiful scene. Also, the setting of the first proposal, if a little different to the book, was great, and in the rain too! I love how the film is like a loop, finishing a starting in a similar setting. The misty morning at the beginning is just like it is for the second proposal. Also, the scenes around the Peaks were stunning!

Preference

Miss Woodhouse:  Can there be any doubt?  I infinitely prefer the 2005 adaption’s scenery.
Miss Laurie:  I prefer the softer colors and prettier country views of the 1995 film.
Amy:  Hold onto your hats, I’m actually picking 2005 this time.  
Lizzie:  This is easy for me – 2005! The countless shots they take, all stunning, along with the beautiful houses make this a clear winner. Others moments I like, other than the ones I have already mentioned, would be the walk Lizzy takes from Longbourne to Netherfield when Jane is ill and also the scene with Lizzy on the swing as the seasons are changing – so well done! I think the only things I would change would be to substitute Pemberley and Rosings from the 1995 version.

Costumes



1995

Miss Woodhouse:  There are some very nice costumes in this adaption.  I especially love Elizabeth’s dresses.
Miss Laurie:  The fashions are all settled firmly in the Regency era, the fabrics for the ladies gowns and shawls are gorgeous and the gentlemen wear vests and other fashions that are quite handsome. Each character has garments that suit their personality and social status.
Amy:   I basically judge all movie costumes against the P&P95 standard.  “On a scale of one to Lydia Bennet, how low is that neckline?”  In all seriousness, though most of the outfits are lovely and Mr. Darcy’s coats are excellent indeed, modesty was obviously not a top priority for the 1995 costume designers.  Sigh.
Lizzie:  The costumes are wonderful in this version, and very regency! All the dresses are great, except the Bingley sister’s ones! I love in particular Lizzy’s wardrobe, her dresses are great! I think also the men’s wardrobes are great. My favourite dress of Lizzy’s would have to be the one she wears to the Netherfield Ball and my favourite outfit of Darcy’s would be (discounting the wet shirt ;)) the lovely green and beige number he wears at Pemberley, after running into Lizzy.   I think the hair styles in this version are very regency as well as very pretty (Lizzy’s hairstyle at the Netherfield Ball in particular.)

2005

Miss Woodhouse:  Although the costumes are just as good as the older adaption, it’s quite hard to pinpoint exactly what era they’re supposed to be from.  Lady Catherine wears very old fashioned clothes and most of the waistlines are too low to be Regency.  However, I love the costumes in this adaption.
Miss Laurie:  It really bugs me that the fashions don’t really stick with one time period but show a range of styles from the Georgian, Regency and Early Victorian era. The characters are often dressed quite sloppily with hair falling down or mussed up clothes, and the Bennet family look quite poor and shabby sometimes. Rich Lady Catherine wears fine gowns but they’re from the older Georgian period while Caroline Bingley wears sleeveless gowns that are more suited to the Victorian era.
Amy:  Much more modest, but also much more boring.  This film is set in 1795, which was when Jane Austen wrote the early drafts of P&P... but the book was actually published in 1813, and the general consensus is that it took place about that time.  So when I see costumes in P&P05, I’m always thinking that they’re not historically accurate.
Lizzie:  The costumes are also quite regency I think. I prefer Jane’s wardrobe in this one, as Lizzy’s is a little bland. Other than that, the costumes are fine and some of them quite pretty. My favourite gown would be one of Jane’s, the one she wears at the end, during the proposal. My favourite outfit would be Mr Darcy’s when he returned to Longbourne with Bingley, I like the stripped jacket. The hair styles in this version are not that regency I don’t think. Wickham’s pony-tail style as well as Lydia and Kitty hair being down most of the time is not very regency. 

Preference

Miss Woodhouse:  1995 because it was more accurate to the time period.  However, I love all of Jane’s dresses in the 2005 adaption and Lizzy’s Netherfield Ball gown.
Miss Laurie:  The costumes of the 1995 film are so pretty and well done.
Amy:  I like and dislike both pretty much equally... but I’d have to choose 1995 if you were holding a gun to my head.  
Lizzie:  I prefer the 1995. The dresses are more interesting but still regency, and I think the men’s outfits were also better. The hair styles also were more regency and also very pretty. I like some of the dresses and outfits in the 2005, but I prefer and I think the costumes and hair styles are nicer, and more accurate to the period in the 1995 version.

Music

1995

Courtesy of Miss Laurie
Miss Woodhouse:   Pretty music with the same theme recurring throughout the soundtrack.  It can get a little repetitive but overall it’s still one of my favorite soundtracks.
Miss Laurie:  The opening theme is lively and fun. The music throughout is fairly simple but very pretty and in keeping with the time period. There are many lovely dance songs that are lots of fun to listen to and seen danced.
Amy:  This soundtrack is so iconic.  I do believe that you could play any track from the CD, and I’d be able to identify its placement in the movie, nine times out of ten.  It actually sounds authentic to the period, too, which is a rarity for period dramas (Bleak House, I’m looking at you).
Lizzie:  The music is delightful to listen to in the series, and every time I hear the opening credits it puts a smile on my face! ;) Because it is a series, you begin to recognise the music as it appears in different forms throughout the series, as it is associated with characters or moods, which is nice to have the consistency. I love the music associated with Rosings and Lady Catherine, very grand. And also the music associated with Darcy and Lizzie is lovely.

2005

Ditto

Miss Woodhouse:  The music in this adaption is some of the best Jane Austen adaption music I’ve ever heard.  It’s beautiful and stirring.
Miss Laurie:  From the first scene the music spills out with such beauty and grace. There are a few lovely dance songs and wonderful piano pieces played. 
Amy:  This.  Music.  Is.  Beyond.  Beautiful.  Especially the tracks “Georgiana,” “Secret Life of Daydreams,” and “Stars and Butterflies.”  I like “Dawn,” too, but unfortunately it always conjures up mental images of Prince Pajamas.  Not good.
Lizzie:  The music in this film is absolutely beautiful, and wonderful to play on the piano! One of my favourites is the opening piece, ‘Dawn’, as it is really pretty and contributes to making it a wonderful opening! The music throughout is very pretty and really helps to convey emotions and add a new dimension to the scenes. Another favourite of mine would be ‘The Secret Life Of Daydreams’ and also the song which Darcy and Lizzy dance to at the Netherfield Ball.

Preference

Miss Woodhouse:  2005.  Again.
Miss Laurie:   I do like the 1995 music but the 2005 soundtrack is my favorites because it’s just gorgeous and I love listening to it.
Amy:  The 2005 soundtrack, by a margin.
Lizzie:  I prefer the music in the 2005 version as I think it is prettier, and it is more enjoyable to listen to when not watching the film, so as a soundtrack, as a lot of it is really relaxing. The music in the 1995 version is also great, with the themes running throughout the series. This was a hard choice, so probably I think I like the accompanying music from the 1995 version when watching the film, but otherwise, when listening to the soundtrack, without the film, I like the 2005 music.

Accuracy To The Book

1995

Miss Woodhouse:  With over six hours to tell the story of Pride and Prejudice, Andrew Davies did an excellent job.  He kept almost all the lines from the book, but added in a few special details that really made this adaption sparkle.
Miss Laurie:  With few things cut short or rearranged the 1995 film is really close to the book. The manners and customs of the time period are preserved and the story is presented on a whole in a manner that is a great representation of Jane Austen’s writing, characters and the Regency time period.
Amy:   It’s like they took the book, dressed it in a ball gown, added some music in the background and played it on TV.  ….Okay, it’s not quite THAT accurate.  But as far as book-to-movie adaptations go, it’s absolutely amazing.  We should use it as the standard.  “On a scale of Anne of Green Gables: The Continuing Story to Pride and Prejudice 1995, how accurate is that movie to the book?”
Lizzie:  So accurate! When I had read the book, and watched the series again I realised how very accurate is was, maybe omitting (or merging) about 4 scenes, and the ending chapters were not all included. I love having it so accurate as therefore, so much of the book is brought to life, and you aren’t left to form many scenes in your head. I also loved the length (which is why it is so accurate), as it really allows you to get to know the characters.  The language too was very accurate to the novel!

2005

Miss Woodhouse:  This adaption is as close to the book as it can be if there’s only two hours to tell the story.  A couple of minor characters were cut as were several [mostly] unimportant scenes.  This adaption may have been slightly ‘darker’ than the book but I really don’t have a problem with that.
Miss Laurie:  The 2005 film is so far from the book that I tend to call it an “interpretation” of Pride and Prejudice rather than an adaptation. Among some of the things they totally messed up are: the Bennets are made out to be paupers, Mrs. Bennet is made into a heroic character, Mr. Darcy is misrepresented and most of the original dialog from the book is paraphrased or cut out altogether in favor of cheesy modern lines.
Amy:  I’m pretty sure that the brainstorming session for P&P05 went something like this... “Okay, gentlemen, today we’re going to figure out an outline for our newest chick flick.  Y’all read Pride and Prejudice in high school, right?  Yes, I know it was thirty years ago, Russ, stop interrupting.  Okay, I want you all to take out a sheet of notebook paper and write down everything you remember about the book, and then we’ll take all that and write a script out of it.  Don’t worry if you’ve forgotten stuff, we’ll stick in a few scenes of Keira Knightley running around with her hair down to make up for it.”  *two hours later*  “BINGO! This thing’s going to be a box-office hit! Except for that part you wrote about Darcy’s proposal being in the daytime, Dave... oh, please, that is SO last millennium.”
Lizzie:   I suppose really I should say, not very accurate, but I think, for length of the film, it was pretty accurate, or at least, it included all the important parts, and although it was fast moving, it wasn’t one of those versions where the story is barely recognisable! All the important scenes were included, and the language used was mostly accurate.  It is a shame it couldn’t have been longer, and I think the characters that were omitted which I would have liked would be Maria Lucas and Mr and Mrs Hurst. I think there was space for Mr and Mrs Hurst as they are in the same scenes as Miss Bingley and don’t need anything extra, but I think leaving out Maria was a wise move. 

Preference

Miss Woodhouse:  Of course this will have to go to P&P 1995 – it really is a good adaption as far as staying true to the book is concerned.  However, I think that P&P 2005 did very well for the short amount of time it had.
Miss Laurie:  The 1995 miniseries is the most faithful adaptation of Pride and Prejudice to date and really deserves all of the fame and love it has received over the years.
Amy:  Um.  I like 1995 better.  Shocking, I know.
Lizzie:  Well, it has got to be the 1995 as it left, like, nothing out! I loved having, pretty much, the entire life brought to life on screen! I think the film did well for the time it had, but the 1995 used the time well, including so much of the novel!

Overall

1995

Miss Woodhouse:  Although I haven’t been very supportive of this adaption throughout these comparisons, I do enjoy watching P&P 1995 when I have enough time.
Miss Laurie:  Pride and Prejudice 1995 has it all: well cast actors, beautiful Regency costumes, stunning scenery, witty remarks, fun scenes and most importantly accuracy to the book.
Amy:  This version is closer to the book, gives you a lot more viewing time for your money (unless your copy of the DVD was a gift, like mine, in which case it gives you more viewing time for your FREE), has the best-cast actors, the best-written script (um, hello, Jane Austen wrote most of it...) and was my introduction to period drama.  I likes it muchly.
Lizzie:  I absolutely love this series! It is one of my favourite Austen adaptations, and always will be! The length, meaning the accuracy to the novel, the costumes, music and locations are wonderful, not to mention the wonderful actors, in particular Firth and Ehle, and also the minor characters.  I love the development of Darcy and Lizzy’s relationship throughout too. A wonderfully satisfying series, with a very satisfying ending!  Great when you have a day to spare! I LOVE IT!

2005

Miss Woodhouse:  I love this adaption!  Almost all the characters are correctly cast, it’s just the right length and the music is gorgeous
Miss Laurie:  Has a lot of fun scenes, pretty music and some witty remarks but it’s so far from how wonderful the book is that it’s a great misrepresentation of Jane Austen’s work. To me it seems that the script was written by a crazy Darcy fangirl who wanted to see all of the juicy bits of Regency life, have Mr. Darcy go almost mad with love for Lizzy or thought Jane Austen’s work was boring and needed to be changed.
Amy:  This is a nice movie if you want an interesting story for two hours... but it’s not my P&P, and that’s that.  Lovely cinematography, good acting, beautiful music, some really nice costumes... but if you want Jane Austen, don’t go here.
Lizzie:  This is also one of my all time favourites, and always will be, and it will always have a special place in my heart as it was my first Austen I ever saw, novel or film. The music and settings are beautiful, and the dramatic tension, and generally connection, between Darcy and Lizzy is really strong, and both Macfadyen and Knightley performed their parts very well! This is such a wonderful film, especially given the time constraints, and a perfect film for a lovely night in. I LOVE IT!

Preference

Miss Woodhouse:  Is it very hard to figure out?  Pride and Prejudice 2005 wins hands down.  If you want to know why, just re-read all of the above.  And now despise me if you dare.
Miss Laurie:  If you can’t already tell I am a huge fan of the 1995 miniseries because although it’s not perfect it is the best representation of Jane Austen’s classic novel that we have today and it’s just good clean entertainment. I’ve seen the 2005 film several times and although I don’t hate it, it contains so many historical and literary errors that I can’t like it very much.
Amy:  P&P95 forever, ladies.  The end.
Lizzie:  Like I said with Darcy, don’t make me choose! I think I have given preference to 1995 more, but it was pretty close! But, I can’t and won’t choose. I think they are so different, mainly in length, which means it is hard to compare them. If I have a day to spare, I watch the series, but just a few hours to spare, or an evening in I watch the film. I find if I watch the film, I think that is my favourite, then I watch the series and I am back to square one, or vice versa! Both are enjoyable to watch, and I would not rather watch one more than the other! So, I cannot pick, which will make me seem indecisive, I am sure.

Yours truly,


1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I have thouroughly enjoyed reading all 4 parts of these comparisons, and have to say that I agree with everything Amy and Miss Laurie said.
Thank you all so much for putting together such entertaining and thought-provoking contrasts :)
Yours Sincerly
Miss Elizabeth Rose (alias)

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