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The Jane Austen Book Club (2007)

PG-13 | | Comedy, Drama, Romance | 5 October 2007 (USA)
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Six Californians start a club to discuss the works of Jane Austen, only to find their relationships -- both old and new -- begin to resemble 21st century versions of her novels.

Director:

Robin Swicord

Writers:

Robin Swicord (screenplay), Karen Joy Fowler (book)

Emily Blunt Through the Years

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Maria Bello ... Jocelyn
Emily Blunt ... Prudie
Kathy Baker ... Bernadette
Amy Brenneman ... Sylvia
Maggie Grace ... Allegra
Jimmy Smits ... Daniel
Ed Brigadier ... Pastor
Kevin Zegers ... Trey
Marc Blucas ... Dean
Catherine Schreiber ... Academic Woman
Ned Hosford Ned Hosford ... Waiter
Hugh Dancy ... Grigg
Messy Stench Messy Stench ... Girl with Dog Collar
Chris Burket Chris Burket ... Skydive Instructor
Parisa Fitz-Henley ... Corinne
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Storyline

Explores Austen's adage that general incivility is at love's essence. Sylvia's husband dumps her for another woman, so Bernadette and Jocelyn organize a book club to distract her. They recruit Sylvia's daughter Allegra; Prudie, a young teacher whose marriage may be on the rocks; and Grigg, a sci-fi fan who joins out of attraction to Jocelyn. The six read and discuss one Austen novel per month. Jocelyn tries to interest Grigg in Sylvia; Allegra falls in love with a woman she meets skydiving; Prudie contemplates an affair with a student; Sylvia's ex keeps popping up. In the discussions, characters reveal themselves in their comments. By the end, are truths universally acknowledged? Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

You don't have to know the books to be in the club. See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for mature thematic material, sexual content, brief strong language and some drug use | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

5 October 2007 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Conociendo a Jane Austen See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$192,719, 28 September 2007, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$3,573,870, 16 December 2007
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Kathy Baker was originally cast as Sky, Prudie's mother. See more »

Goofs

At the first library fundraiser, one of the characters remarks about "all of Silicon Valley" having shown up. Silicon Valley is located in Santa Clara Valley, not Sacramento Valley. See more »

Quotes

Daniel Avila: I was just thinking about something Allegra said at Jocelyn's the other day...so we're talking about how we all need to have connection, you know, conversation, sex, companionship, and Allegra says, "Well, you get all that from Mommy." I have to tell you, it really made me sad.
Sylvia Avila: Aw, baby, she'll find somebody.
Daniel Avila: No, it made me sad for us, because I've been struggling with whether a marriage can sustain all of that over, uh, over 20+ years or if it's just inevitable that after a certain amount of ...
[...]
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Crazy Credits

The credits are displayed next to behind-the-scenes stills of the cast and crew during the production process. See more »

Connections

References Sense and Sensibility (1995) See more »

Soundtracks

The Manhattan
Written by Stan Sulzmann and John Parricelli
Courtesy of APM Music
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Pleasant; Characters and Resolution Did Not Convince, Engage or Arouse Feeling
2 July 2008 | by Danusha_GoskaSee all my reviews

"The Jane Austen Book Club" was a pleasant movie, one I didn't mind watching once but would not want to watch again. There were a couple of very good lines, and the actors are all, without exception, fine. Production values are high.

The characters and resolution didn't convince or engage me, though. I just did not believe, at any point, that these were real people. I especially did not believe the final scene. "He ended up with her? I don't think so," was what I kept thinking. I didn't believe the final couplings, and I did not care.

I had the same problem with this movie that I had with the book on which it was based. Both book and movie felt like writerly exercises to me. I felt as if the writer, Karen Joy Fowler, got this neato schematic idea in her writing class, "Aha! A book club of bourgeois people who read Jane Austen and fall in love!" and went about filling in the pieces of that puzzle without ever investing any of the characters with real human warmth.

One characterization stands out, though. Emily Blunt as a depressive woman with a bad mother, a mediocre marriage, and a temptation to do very bad things, creates a moody air all by herself. It's as if she came in from the set of a daring indy movie. I hope she's given chances in the future to live up to the promise she shows here.


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