Monday, January 2, 2012

Pride and Prejudice

Social climber Mrs. Bennet is eager to marry off her five daughters so when the handsome and high standing Mr. Bingley arrives in town, she sees the perfect opportunity to set-up her eldest daughter Jane. Her headstrong daughter Elizabeth though is taken by Bingley's likewise attractive but boorish friend Mr. Darcy although she refuses to be courted in the usual manner and seeks social revenge for an initial slight. This 1940 adaptation of Jane Austen's seminal comedy of manners is a delightful and gorgeous treatment. As Elizabeth, Greer Garson is simply magnetic as an intelligent woman caught up in a shallow society and as her counterpart, Laurence Olivier turns in a wonderful performance as the similarly out of place Darcy. The supporting roles are filled nicely as well, particularly Edmund Gwenn and Mary Boland as the heads of the Bennet family. "Pride and Prejudice" is an often revisited Austen novel and here in its first telling, it is truly an excellent rendition.
*** 1/2 out of ****