Fridays are fast becoming my favourite day of the week. I have been working Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays for the last little while and will be up until Christmas eve while Mum kindly looks after Amelia. Weekends are always pretty hectic, and Mondays tend to be about rushing around getting things organised for the week. Fridays we go out and buy a few bits of organic fruit and veg, see friends, usually bake something (maybe something from Yarnstorm! The rock buns are still a big hit, though today it’s Moosewood’s Pumpkin Pie) and potter around in the garden. I want next year to be more like this, less about illustration. We’ll see.
Today I am also going to start sorting out some of our piles of books so that I can find my copy of Pride and Prejudice. I feel it needs a revisit.
I have now seen the Hollywood version of the book twice in the last two weeks. Of course, like everyone else I know, I have seen the BBC version about a bazillion times and have taken part in carving that production on the collective unconscious. It is almost perfect. For any production company taking on another remake of the story it was going to be a tough task – actually – I would go so far as to say that it was a completely insane idea. How can anyone really see both and not make comparisons?
So, off to the Rivoli I went. The first time I went with Claire and Kim and spent the first fifteen minutes watching between my fingers, twitching and shifting awkwardly in my seat — I was terrified that I was going to hate it and I wanted so badly to like it. It was absolutely impossible to not keep comparing it to the 90s version – character interpretation, historical accuracies, well loved scenes and speeches and of course, the two main roles. But then at one point about half an hour in I consciously decided that I had to let up on the film, and let it be something completely different – flaws and all. And from then on, apart from some real clangers mostly in the delivery of lines or in the dumbing down of the language (oh and Judi Dench – and the bloke who played Wickham, and Lydia… and Kitty’s giggling… oh and Keira’s wig!), I was completely enchanted. I went back a second time with my Mum to watch it again knowing what I was in for, and it was even better. While it didn’t have the opportunity to gently unwind with the superb subtleties of the BBC version, it was still really enjoyable. I mean — it’s such a good story, even when hacked to pieces. Mum thought it was too long and got sick of all the lingering shots of Keira because “really, she’s not all that special”.
My take on the Keira vs. Jennifer — Jennifer wins hands down though Keira had certain charm and I thought she did a pretty good job of recreating Lizzie to be her own.
My take on Matthew vs. Colin — tough one, but I am now totally transfixed by Matthew MacFadyen and his awkward, vulnerable take on Darcy. Tonight I begin watching Spooks on dvd.