MovieMondays: Pride and Prejudice

DISCLAIMER: I know that Pride and Prejudice (the book) is better than the movie. I know this to be true of all books.

In fact, when I studied abroad in Spain as an undergrad, I took one book with me: Pride and Prejudice. I’m not sure why I didn’t pack other books, since I am an avid reader and since I knew I wouldn’t have TV to help me fall asleep. Consequently, I read Pride and Prejudice about 15 times that summer. I would finish it, and start it again. I’M NOT EVEN SORRY.

I wrote a couple papers on the book while in school and it is one of my top five books of all time. Just a side note.

The movie, though. (This is MovieMondays, after all, and not Book Mondays…) Let’s talk about the movie.

You shouldn’t watch this movie if:

  • You can’t sit down and/or still for 129 minutes.
  • Old-timey movies annoy you.
  • Keira Knightly makes you frustrated and you only like her in Pirates of the Caribbean.
  • You find it hard to understand a British accent.
  • You haven’t read the book – THIS GOES FOR ALL MOVIES. Read the book first, people. Read the book first.

None of the above is true about me, however, so I have watched and re-watched Pride and Prejudice since it came out on DVD. (And I mean this version. I have nothing against the older version. I just happen to love the newer one.)

I’ll do my best not to throw in too many book comments.

 

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Pride and Prejudice

Released: November 23, 2005

Rotten Tomatoes: 85%

1. Girl Power

Watching movies from the olden days can be frustrating if women not having any rights frustrates you. Elizabeth Bennet (Keira Knightley) is not your typical lady. She is stubborn, and strong, and opinionated, and all the wonderful things that women weren’t allowed to be back in the day. Elizabeth chooses her own path and her own way. To juxtapose this, Elizabeth’s sisters symbolize different types of women. Jane (Rosamund Pike) is sweet and obedient and kind. Lydia (Jena Malone) is frivolous and spoiled. Kitty (Carey Mulligan) wants to be just like Lydia. Mary (Talulah Riley) is different and plain. The Bennet sisters represent a wide range of women, which I love. Women can be all things!

You go girls!

Jane, Mary, Lydia, Elizabeth, Kitty

 

2. Mr. Darcy as The Anti-hero

I’m a fan of the anti-hero, and Mr. Darcy certainly represents this concept in the movie. (I wrote a paper about this. He’s a Byronic hero, or so I theorized.) Played by Matthew Macfayden, the 2005 Mr. Darcy is quiet, reserved, and interesting. He delivers all of Mr. Darcy’s lines with impeccable grace, and, when necessary, disgust and anger. Mr. Darcy is not quick to show emotions, but on screen his disdain for the majority of the movie is palpable, even though he is a man of few words. The same can be said for his change of heart and his obvious admiration of Elizabeth. Even when his thoughts appear as a voice-over, he is a powerful Mr. Darcy.

 

 

 

3. The Style

Pride and Prejudice is set in London in the 19th century, and I am in love with what all the women wear. These days, outfits and style range from classy to trashy and everywhere in between. Back then women were poised and graceful and always, always dressed appropriately. Don’t get me wrong, I love my sweat pants. But I truly enjoy seeing the styles from the past. Sometimes I think it would be easier to have a set dress code for life, in the same way I was jealous of schools that had dress codes.

 

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Lookin’ fancy!

 

 

How weird am I if I want all those outfits? I’m not sure where I would wear them. But I definitely want them.

 

4. The Sisterly Bond

I have an older sister, and she is fantastic, and this movie shows how important family and sisters can be. When watching Jane and Elizabeth, I see my sister and me… joking and judging and laughing and figuring out life. I truly don’t know how girls without sisters ever figure anything out. Moms are great, sure, but there are some things you can only talk about with sisters. I love watching all the sisters interact in this movie because, as I said, they are all different, but together that make up their family.

netherfield-ball

BFF

 

 

If you have the time, sit down and watch this masterpiece. After you’ve read the book, of course.

 

MKB

 

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Want more?

Check out the blog  Jane Austen’s World.

MovieMondays: Father of the Bride

This movie… this movie still gets to me. I watched this movie A LOT when I was younger.

When I pictured my wedding (before I knew how much weddings really cost… uh, no…) this is what I thought of.

I just made the boyfriend sit down and watch this movie with me. Surprisingly, in the 90’s, when the movie came out, he never felt inclined to tune in. Boy, did he miss out! (I don’t think he hated it, per say, but I don’t anticipate he will watch it with me again.) I tried to hide that I cried a little when Annie called her dad from the airport, but I don’t think I did a very good job.

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Released: January 1, 1991

Rotten Tomatoes: 73%

 

1. I Love Steve Martin’s Character

I just appreciate Steve Martin, for a lot of reasons. Especially as an adult, I have grown to appreciate his many talents.

…who doesn’t love that?

When I first started watching and rewatching Father of the Bride, my parents were still married and my dad was still around and I just really loved the movie because I thought Steve Martin (as George Banks) was hilarious. He is hilarious, by the way. Later on, after the divorce and the nastiness and all that, I watched the movie and thought: Who has a dad like that? Does anyone? I am in awe of George Banks.  I am in awe because he feels devastated that his daughter has decided to marry, and I can’t fathom or imagine what it’s like to have a dad that feels that way.

2. I  Also Love Diane Keaton

I’m not sure when my love of Diane Keaton first started. I have never seen her in a movie when I didn’t think – you go Diane Keaton! Diane Keaton as Nina Banks is typical Diane Keaton… maybe a little more calm than her other characters. She is the voice of reason for George and the family and she maintains a calm, soothing tone. (Even when George gets arrested for the hotdog bun incident in the grocery store, she calmly enters the jail and rationally handles the situation.)

I think Diane Keaton is a super classy lady, and I love and have always loved to watch her on screen.

3. That Wedding, Though.

As a kid, I didn’t have a solid grasp on how expensive things like weddings really are. So, when I watched the movie, I would imagine my wedding and my reception would be just like Annie’s wedding and reception. I especially loved the tent with the lights. See below.

(I also loved the wedding because the whole family works together, and I’m a sap for things like that.)

As an adult, when George freaks out about the cost of the whole shindig, I’m like holy s*** I would never pay that much for a wedding! But it’s still nice to watch.

 

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I mean.. wowzers.

 

 

 

I also would be remiss to leave out Martin Short as Fraunk and this scene:

 

 

PS: I just found out, while writing this, that this movie is a remake of the 1950’s version! WHAT! Also, Elizabeth Taylor is in it! DOUBLE WHAT! Must watch.

50fotb

MovieMondays: Now and Then

Everyone in the millennial generation loves the movie Now and Then. I don’t have any statistics or links to back that up. I just happen to believe that’s true.

Now and Then is one of those movies that you watch again as an adult and it still gets to you. My Girl is another movie like that. (Where are his glasses?! He can’t see without his glasses!) I have made the mistake of rewatching some childhood favorites once I got older only to be bitterly disappointed. Don’t watch Ferngully as an adult. Even with the rockin’ scene with the bat and the tape player, it’s not good anymore.

Now and Then though… yes, it passes the test of time. (Maybe that’s why it’s named Now and Then? Deep thoughts.)

now and then

Released: October 25, 1995

RottenTomatoes Score: 19% (THAT IS A CROCK OF MALARKEY.)

Let’s walk through some reasons why this is an excellent movie.

1. Devon Sawa It’s a Coming of Age Movie

I love coming of age movies and books. It’s a theme and a concept that every single person can relate to. No matter how or where you grew up, you did, eventually, have to become an adult. (I kept trying to fight it — you do have to become responsible or face the consequences of being irresponsible. There’s no other way.)

Now and Then starts with the adult Samantha stating that you can never go home again. When I was younger and watched this movie, I remember thinking that was so silly! I could always go home! But as an adult, you realize you really can’t ever go home again and have it be the same home it once was. Everything changes and you change. It’s not the same.

Samantha, Roberta, Teeny, and Chrissy all deal with growing up differently and face different demons. This coming of age movie tackles multiple issues: divorce, first loves, death, being judgmental, weight issues, inappropriate parenting techniques/behavior, gender identity issues… it goes on and on. I really appreciate how one script can help any type of person relate to the coming of age struggle.

2. Devon Sawa The Soundtrack is Stellar

The Now and Then soundtrack is one of the first CDs I owned. (The VERY first was Boyz II Men – great CD.) Not only did I repeat watch this movie as a child, I frequently threw the soundtrack into my cd player and jammed out.

I’m a firm believer (I guess most people are, though?) that the music can make the movie. Another great example of this is Across the Universe.  I tend to love movies that feature great 70’s songs, and this is definitely one of those movies.

 Another reason I think the music stuck with me from Now and Then is because the girls are singing and dancing and acting a fool. And I most certainly was doing that. I still remember some of the choreographed moves two friends and I made up in my basement to Britney Spear’s Lucky.

3. Devon Sawa I Related to ALL the Characters

I was chubby, I wasn’t very girly, my parents got divorced, and I liked cheesy love stories. I related to all the girls in this movie as a kid and as an adult, when I watch it again, I find I can relate to their adult versions.

I remember standing in my bedroom and yelling for my mom, asking if we had any duct tape. She responded, without any notion of what I was thinking, that I couldn’t duct tape my boobs. WHAT. How did she know? (I’m referencing the scene where Roberta does, in fact, duct tape her boobs.

4. Devon Sawa Okay… Devon Sawa

I mean, as a kid of the 90’s who didn’t love Devon Sawa and, most importantly, this scene. Seriously.

MKB

MovieMondays: St. Elmo’s Fire

I LOVE THE BRAT PACK.

This post was initially titled MovieMondays: The Breakfast Club. But, I think most everyone has seen, or at least heard of, The Breakfast Club. I just wanted to make it known that I love The Breakfast Club. *Fist Pump Freeze Frame*

So, I switched it. To the other best 80’s movie ever: St. Elmo’s Fire.

I first watched this movie in one of my favorite houses in a small town in Alabama. A second home of mine. I saw it with my sister’s best friend, laying on my stomach, with my chin propped in my hands, on my elbows.

I love this movie. It makes me think of my second home, of being younger, and of how cool I felt when my sister’s best friend asked me to watch it with her.  I didn’t relate to it as much as I do now. I immediately loved it, though.

St_elmo's_fire

Released: June 28, 1985

THE CAST:

Emilio Estevez as Kirby

Andrew McCarthy as Kevin

Rob Lowe as Billy

Judd Nelson as Alec

Ally Sheedy as Leslie

Demi Moore as Jules

Mare Wenningham as Wendy

Here are four reasons why I love St. Elmo’s Fire.

1. It Sucks to Graduate

When I first watched this movie, I had not faced the dark, dark hole that is graduating from college. All your friends move to different cities, have real responsibilities, and have real jobs (for the most part.) Some of them do boomerang, I have to admit. But I digress. In college, you are surrounded, all the time, by your friends and parties and things to do. Then, you graduate and it’s a pretty immediate sense of loss.

The characters in this movie show the pain-staking transition from college-adult to real-life adult, complete with a few extra issues: unrequited love, a cocaine problem, a non-faithful boyfriend, and nervous breakdowns. Maintaining friendships with your old friends is difficult, and maintaining your sense of self is ever harder. St. Elmo’s Fire does not hold back. These characters are put through the ringer. This move shows you that you can survive, but that it does, in fact, suck to graduate.

2. Everyone Is Not Created Equal.

In the movie, Alec is a successful guy pursuing a career in politics. Billy is struggling to hold down a job. How do they stay friends?  It’s hard! It’s really hard to relate to people who are in a different working class than you. Don’t believe me? If you’re super successful, take a note of who your friends are. Anyone stand out that isn’t as super successful as you? I thought so.

St. Elmo’s Fire prepared me for the depressing fact that not everyone is created equal, and this extends to the post-graduate life. You’ll see that Billy struggles the most with letting go of his college life. On campus, he was clearly a god. In the real world, he’s nobody.

Everyone is not created equal and everyone is not treated equally. My mom used to tell me: you are special to me, and to this family, but that doesn’t mean much when you walk out the door. She was right.

3. Boys Are Mean

Billy and Alec really solidified this for me — although this doesn’t apply to every guy out there. I know there are good guys. There are great guys who aren’t cheaters and bums and liars.That’s not what I’m saying.

My sister used to warn me about fighting with boys. She would tell me that if I wanted to start something with a guy, I better be prepared to have my feelings hurt, because they fight dirty.

In the movie, Billy takes complete and total advantage of Wendy. I don’t want to ruin it for you poor, poor souls who have never seen it. But he’s scum. Also scum: Alec. Watching these two men operate made me realize that my sister was right, all those years. (Except about me borrowing her clothes. She wasn’t right about not sharing. Even if I did always ruin her clothes.)

I’m all for equality, but, women, you must know by now: men are different and live differently and fight differently than women. And if you don’t agree, watch this movie.

4. You Can Survive After College

Watching this movie will most likely throw you into a tailspin of nostalgia. Remember when I was cool? Remember when I was young? Remember when I was idealistic and thought anything was possible? Yeah. Like most 80’s movies, this movie wraps up rather nicely. But I think the final message is that you can, you really can survive post-graduate life. It’s hard and demanding and confusing and unfair, but you can survive it. If Leslie and Jules can survive nervous-breakdowns then you can survive the post-graduate real-adult life. And that message is why I watch this movie. Over and over and over again.

BONUS: 5. THIS VIDEO.

MKB