Sun at Last and Emma

I awoke to the wonder of a sunny sky and a plowed street. Yay! The downside, of course, is that Sailor Boy and I both seem to have caught some kind of crud, and neither of us feel like spending hours shoveling out to said plowed street. Rio, however, is once again interested in visiting the outside world, and our visiting dog has decided to grace us with her presence (she spent all of yesterday hibernating upstairs).

I just want to lie around drinking soup and watching Emma on PBS. I’m enjoying it, though years of watching the Gwyneth Paltrow version makes it all seem to be moving super slowly. It’s like every offhand mention of anything occurring in the book requires an entire scene in this film. Mr. Knightley tells Emma that Robert Martin came to see him? The film shows several scenes worth of Robert Martin coming to see him: Robert Martin approaching the estate, Robert and Knightley talking, and then, you know, just so we get the full and complete picture of the situation, Robert Martin leaving the estate.


Also the casting is giving me fits. I can’t really picture Johnny Lee Miller as anything but the kid from Hackers (and the imagined image of him and a young Angelina Jolie getting married in blood spattered t-shirts is indelible), and Romola Garai is the chick from the Dirty Dancing sequel. Didn’t like her in that, either. I wish she’d close her mouth every once in a while.

I think the problem is that I don’t much like Emma. I think it’s probably fourth or fifth on my list of Austen, and while my two favorite Austens (Pride & Prejudice and Persuasion) are among my favorite books of all time, I’ve discovered that I’m not going to fall all over an Austen just because it’s an Austen. I feel the same way about Mansfield Park. There are parts of it I really like, but Fanny never did it for me, and her relationship with her cousin? (I mean, aside from all the squicky cousins-raised-as-siblings-still-in-love thing that was apparently appropriate in Austen’s day.) Meh.

But I’m only through part 1 of 3, so we’ll see. I did find the Emma/Knightley romance arresting as a teenager, but now I don’t think I can handle the patronizing way Knightley treats Emma. I find their age difference more unsettling now.

Okay, I think I’m feeling a little better now. Time to get up and see about shoveling that driveway.

Posted in Austen, diversions, sick, TV

8 Responses to Sun at Last and Emma

  1. PurpleRanger says:

    Is Rio likely to be buried in the snow if/when she ever goes outside?

  2. Tiff says:

    Are you referring to the Kate Beckinsale “Emma”? I actually quite like the Paltrow version, and I can’t really bring myself to watch another.

    Still have to read Persuasion! It’s on the top of my list, but the library keeps giving me my holds, so I’m having trouble getting to anything that’s not from the library. I borrowed my first romance novel this week!

    Let us know how the Emma goes – I think I’m kind of a full-on Austen fan. Have you watched North and South yet? Or Wives & Daughters? Both great BBC adaptations of Gaskell’s novels.

  3. Tawna Fenske says:

    What, no dog eating posts today? ๐Ÿ™‚

    I know I might have my English degree taken away for saying this, but I’ve never really cared for Austen. Just not my cup of tea. Then again, I don’t think I’ve ever tried to WATCH it instead of read it. Maybe that’s what I’m missing.

    Better go update the Netflix queue.


  4. Diana says:

    No, Tiff, this is the brand new Emma, starring Romola Garai and Johnny Lee Miller.

    I did watch North & South recently. After the first episode I was like, no way am I ever going to buy this guy as a romantic lead. But he totally won me over. I love the scene where he’s standing in the snow as her carriage pulls away.

  5. Elizabeth Babcock says:

    Yo Emma, Iยดm real happy for you and imma let you finish, but Pride and Prejudice was the best Jane Austen novel of all time, OF ALL TIME!

    I will shovel for you if you like ๐Ÿ™‚

  6. Nicola says:

    I do love Mr Thornton, even if he is a bit of a mummy’s boy. I also like the part where he’s watching the carriage pull away and says, ‘Look back, look back at ME.’ It kind of ties in nicely with the bit at the end when she hands him her luggage and he says, ‘You’re coming home with ME?’ However, although I heart it, I do doubt whether it really would have been cool for her to just head on home with a guy she wasn’t married to!

  7. Diana says:

    Nicola, he’s totally a mama’s boy! But you’re right about the weirdness at the train at the end. In the movie, they’re all making out and stuff — and this is the same guy who had a holy Victorian FIT at the sight of her hugging her brother and basically called her a big slut, so I was like, um, EXCUSE ME?!?!?!?!

    But i did like the scene in the snow with the carriage…

  8. Tiff says:

    Nicola, if you read North and South, the ending is pretty teasing/scandalous as well. Not as scandalous as making out in a train station and then heading home with the guy, but still, Thornton and Margaret are VERY familiar.

    I also thought Thornton was a jerk at first, and was completely won over by the end. And yes, the carriage scene is amazing! I also love the visual at the end of episode one when Margaret is writing to Edith and she says, “I think I’ve seen hell…and it’s white. It’s snow white” with the cotton factory in the background. And the amazing first proposal scene. Who am I kidding? I love it all!

    I had no idea there was a new Emma. And adapted by the same person who did N&S?

    By the way, has anyone seen the new Sense & Sensibility? ‘Cause I adore it. I think I was salivating over the visuals.