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Film Film August 29, 2004
Simon Langton
Pride and Prejudice

I was actually a big fan of the 1940 film version of Jane Austen's beloved novel. Despite that movie's obvious shortcomings, it offered wonderful performances by Laurence Olivier as Darcy and Edmund Gwenn as Mr. Bennett. Of course, the 1995 BBC/A&E miniseries pretty much puts the older version to rest, since it's far superior in just about every aspect -- faithfulness to Austen's story and dialogue, accuracy of period costumes and scenery, and general excellence of the cast. Again, Darcy is a stand-out, with Colin Firth as the mostly opaque leading man. Jennifer Ehle is appealing as Elizabeth Bennett, and Allison Steadman is delightfully dreadful as the fretting Mrs. Bennett.

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