Jane Austen's beloved comedy about finding your equal and earning your happy ending, is reimagined in this. Handsome, clever, and rich, Emma Woodhouse is a restless queen bee without rivals in her sleepy little town. In this glittering satire of social class and the pain of growing up, Emma must adventure through misguided matches and romantic missteps to find the love that has been there all along.Written by
Connor Swindells (Mr. Martin) and Tanya Reynolds (Mrs. Elton) both appear on Sex Education. See more »
When Emma and Harriet first take tea together, the ringlet in front of Emma's left ear alternates between being snagged in her earring and hanging free. See more »
We are both prejudiced. You against, I for him and we shall have no chance of agreeing until he is really here.
Prejudiced? I'm not prejudiced!
Yes, but I am. Very much, and without at all being ashamed of it. My love for Mr. and Mrs. Weston gives me a decided prejudice in his favor.
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The film's title has a period at the end, meant to signify the movie as a "period piece" set in the original era. See more »
This was the last movie my wife and I saw in the actual theater-- back in March 2020 -- just days before covid-19 lockdown began. As of July we're wondering when we'll ever get to see another. In the meantime we've acquired a big UHD TV and subscriptions to a bunch of streaming services. But there's still nothing to match watching on a big screen with a packed audience of engaged viewers.
Anyway: long before there was "Mean Girls" and "Clueless", there was Jane Austen's novel about a good-hearted but manipulative, un-self-aware young woman who has a great deal of learning to do about real people. This most recent version of "Emma" is very nice and certainly worth seeing in whatever format. I think it's neither better nor worse than the good 1996 version (the one with Gwyneth Paltrow in the title role) -- they both have fine production values and fine casts, just different emphases, shadings of the various characters, and the choices for cuts made to the story to make it fit into a normal 2-hour run time. Anya Taylor-Joy is not only a good, distinctively featured young actress but she also *looks* as young as Jane Austen's heroine is intended to be, about age 20. She has the (often baseless) self-confidence arising from a privileged, untroubled upbringing, but a journey of self-discovery awaits her, and that's what makes the story.
Other standout characters include Mia Goth, who plays friend/protegee Harriet Smith as even more of a hapless stooge than usual; and the incomparable Bill Nighy as Emma's father Mr. Woodhouse. Is he really just a hypochondriac always fussing over cold drafts and fireplaces? It becomes clear that he knows and sees a good deal more than his loving but blithely unobservant daughter gives him credit for. And Nighy can steal scenes without saying a word, just by body posture and a raised eyebrow. He's a cinematic treasure. Johnny Flynn as Mr. Knightley is fine but a bit forgettable in the end.
And the scenery. It's so lush and green and bright that you have to consciously shake yourself to realize that no, the English countryside is really NOT always warm and sunlit as it is here. But this is fiction, and it just helps us settle in and enjoy the comfortable ride through this classic tale. For the best screen version of Emma out there, though, I happily recommend the 2009 TV miniseries starring Romola Garai. She's perfect for the part, and its 4-hour length lets the full story expand and breathe the way it should.
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