Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Movie Review- Love and Friendship

For the 2016 Period Drama Film Challenge and because as an avid Jane Austen enthusiast I consider it my duty to, I will be reviewing the film Love and Friendship.
Synopsis from IMDB: Lady Susan Vernon takes up temporary residence at her in-laws' estate and, while there, is determined to be a matchmaker for her daughter Frederica -- and herself too, naturally.
Love and Friendship is based off of Jane Austen's epistolary novella Lady Susan but actually uses the title from a novel she wrote as a juvenile.

The film kept pretty closely to the book with a few minor deviations that I do not think detracted from the story and some of them were rather humorous. Since Austen's actual story was written in the form of letters, most of the dialogue was not hers as she really didn't have any. The screenwriter though did an excellent job, I thought, with dialogue and it had me laughing several times. The main character being less than reputable is quite a contrast to Austen's other works, so one has to reconcile themselves to that. I think though there are plenty of reputable characters in the story to make up for Lady Susan. My mother commented that she felt that Lady Susan was like Becky Sharpe of Vanity Fair, which I would somewhat agree with. Lady Susan is a far more sophisticated Becky Sharpe and I feel that Jane Austen wrote a nicer, as in more polite, novel than Vanity Fair was. It's interesting to contrast though. I did feel like they made Lord Vernon too dense, which annoyed me. Also, in the book, Reginald de Courcy breaks it off himself with Lady Susan as he truly sees through her.  However, in the film she breaks it off with him in the pretense of him accusing her falsely and not wanting to be in a relationship where trust was no paramount. With breaking it off with him though she planned to use that to make herself look innocent and hopefully get back together with him, which in the end she does not do. I just felt like it made Reginald seem more gullible then he really was. That all made me think of Edmund Bertram and Mary Crawford in Mansfield Park and I think there are some parallels to draw there as well, though Mary Crawford with all of her faults was not as immoral as Lady Susan. Besides those couple instances the slight deviation were not irksome, at least to me.

There were a few actors I was familiar with. Kate Beckinsale, who plays Lady Susan herself, is Emma in the 1996 version of Emma. Stephen Fry, who has a minor role as Mr. Johnson, is well known to us as Jeeves from Jeeves and Wooster. Jemma Redgrave, who plays Lady de Courcy, I know from Doctor Who where she plays Kate Stewart.

When it comes to the appropriateness of the film as far as anything shown it was entirely appropriate. However, Lady Susan is basically a loose woman. She's conniving and manipulative. She uses her talents as a flirt and her knowledge of men to get what she wants in life. Therefore there are those themes throughout the film.

The fashion was lovely. I preferred Lady Susan's gowns overall. Here's a few samples. :)

This is my favorite! 
Overall I enjoyed Love and Friendship and thought it was a delightful addition to anyone's collection of Jane Austen films.

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Sunday, June 19, 2016

It's Monday! Joy!

I'm still majorly slacking on blogging right now but I am trying to keep up with reading. I started watching the TV show Castle recently and I'm already on the third season, which goes to show how obsessed I am with watching it. Needless to say my time is a little consumed with that instead of reading. Nathan Fillion is SO HILARIOUS though!!!
I have really been enjoying life recently though. My brother and sister-in-law found out they are having a girl, which is what I was rooting for. I'm now even more excitedly working on the christening gown for the sweet baby girl. The break from work while I was on the mission trip was refreshing and I was able to go back with renewed energy. Life is good. :)

Currently Reading

  • Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte (re-read)
  • The Return of the King by J.R.R. Tolkien (re-read)
  • Pickwick Papers by Charles Dickens 

Finished this Past Week

  • Hornblower and the Atropos by C.S. Forester 
  • The Bourne Identity by Robert Ludlum 

Coming Soon

  • Waverley by Sir Walter Scott
  • Don Quixote by Miguel Cervantes 

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Monday, June 13, 2016

It's Monday! Behind

I made it back from Nebraska on Saturday. It was an incredible trip and one hard to summarize. Hopefully I'll have a full recap of it some post soon. On that point, I know I've been terribly lax with posting recently and even reading for that matter as of late. I'm going to try and spend more time on writing some blog posts soon so hopefully that will be remedied. Reading is just slower right now and I'm okay with that. I don't want to push myself to read too much or else I won't be enjoying it and reading is enjoyment for myself and I don't want to spoil that.

Currently Reading

  • Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte (re-read)- I kept up with the read-along while I was in Nebraska and now that I'm back hopefully I can be more involved in the discussions. 
  • Bourne Identity by Robert Ludlum
  • Hornblower and the Atropos by C.S. Forester
  • The Return of the King by J.R.R. Tolkien

Finished this Week

  • none

Coming Soon

  • Waverley by Sir Walter Scott
  • Don Quixote by Miguel Cervantes- My Classics Club spin pick! 

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Monday, June 6, 2016

It's Monday! Absent

Remember how I mentioned that I was going to be a chaperone on my church's youth mission trip? Well it's come! Currently I'm in Nebraska with the team witnessing on an Indian reservation. So yes this is a scheduled post. Don't expect replies to comments or that many posts this week because everything that does come out will be schedule. Actually, I've been really bad about replying to comments in general recently. Sorry! I do read them.
I've also been slacking with reading and writing reviews. Oh well. It will happen when it happens. :)

Currently Reading

  • Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte (re-read)
  • Hornblower and the Atropos by C.S. Forester
  • The Pickwick Papers by Charle Dickens
  • The Return of the King by J.R.R. Tolkien (re-read)

Finished this Past Week

  • none

Coming Soon

  • Waverley by Sir Walter Scott
  • The Bourne Identity by Robert Ludlum

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Saturday, June 4, 2016

Classics Club Spin- June 2016

It's time for another Classics Club spin!
Here's the rules. :)
  • Go to your blog.
  • Pick twenty books that you’ve got left to read from your Classics Club List.
  • Try to challenge yourself: list five you are dreading/hesitant to read, five you can’t WAIT to read, five you are neutral about, and five free choice (favorite author, rereads, ancients — whatever you choose.)
  • Post that list, numbered 1-20, on your blog by next Monday.
  • Monday morning, we’ll announce a number from 1-20. Go to the list of twenty books you posted, and select the book that corresponds to the number we announce.
  • The challenge is to read that book by August 1, even if it’s an icky one you dread reading! (No fair not listing any scary ones!)
It's always fun to participate in the Classic Club's spins. Sometimes it gets me to read one of the books I was putting off. 

Can't Wait to Read! 
1) The 39 Steps by John Buchan
2) Waverley by Sir Walter Scott
3) Crime and Punishment by Fyodor Dostoevsky
4) The Mark of Zorro by Johnston McCulley
5) The Once and Future King by T.H. White

Dreading Reading
6) East of Eden by John Steinbeck 
7) The Portrait of a Lady by Henry James 
8) Moby Dick by Herman Melville 
9) The Divine Comedy by Dante 
10) Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand 

Feeling Neutral About
11) Cyrano de Bergerac by Edmond Rostand 
12) Kim by Rudyard Kipling
13) Kidnapped by Robert Louis Stevenson 
14) Dracula by Bram Stoker
15) Don Quixote by Miguel Cervantes 

16) The Merchant of Venice by William Shakespeare 
17) Measure for Measure by William Shakespeare 
18) The Tempest by William Shakespeare 
19) Twelfth Night by William Shakespeare 
20) Richard III by William Shakespeare 

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