Ted, a stuffy white guy from Illinois working in sales for the Barcelona office of a US corporation, is paid an unexpected visit by his somewhat less stuffy cousin Fred, who is an officer ... See full summary »
Set in the 1790s, Love and Friendship centers on beautiful widow Lady Susan Vernon, who has come to the estate of her in-laws to wait out colorful rumors about her dalliances circulating through polite society. Whilst there, she decides to secure a husband for herself and her rather reluctant debutante daughter, Frederica.
I was constantly aware of its mechanization of cinema as the forms meeting, and how film both succeeds and fails literature. The film observes its own effect. Seeing as these are novels so have to interface via cinematic means and Austen is not right for cinema since it's this indulgence of thoughts, dilemmas, gossip, in a beautiful and heightened way. Meaning the effect of reading is indulging in secrets while theater only shows. So then to meet it is to meet the language not create some faux-cinema around it. Then this is probably the most pure Austen adaptation I recall, as it examines so carefully. What happens, for me, is I do not at all get nearly the same amount of pleasure hearing the beautiful dialogue as I do reading it. It doesn't scale at all. (A lot of writers learn this.) The achievement of the film then is something else reads and that's its careful staging and theater, the comic humor of these socialites; you sort of realize it was never because of the language to begin with, but the infectious energy and subversion of it, however the language serves it the energy reads the same creating viable parallel works that scrutinize and ponder ending up revealing the same treatise from a different angle, and it passes. That is sort of the essence of an adaptation, is to not adapt, as reverence always sinks a picture which is why trash novels make better films. "Marriage last forever." "Not in my experience."
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