Emma – Movie 1996

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Taking a break from Jane Eyre last night, I watched Emma.  This version stars Gwyneth Paltrow as Emma, and Jeremy Northam as Mr. Knightley.

I think Paltrow did a great job as Emma.  She was sufficiently self-assured, snobby, impetuous, and conniving.  At times her emotions seemed a little shallow, but it wasn’t awful.  Although Northam wasn’t present as much as I would have liked to have seen him, he was an excellent Mr. Knightley.  He is handsome, thoughtful and shows affection and concern for others.  Basically, he’s a guy that any woman would want as her own.  😉

The supporting characters were also great, adding a richness to the story.  Miss Bates, Harriet, Mrs. Weston, and Mr. and Mrs. Elton were all wonderful.

The movie follows the general storyline of the book, keeping all of the major events the same.  I’d say it’s a very good representation of the book.  They did, however, change a good bit of dialogue, making it seem more updated.  For me personally, it wasn’t a big issue.

This adaptation has a very professional overall look.  I’m not surprised by that, but after seeing some movies recently that looked less than professional, I appreciated the polish on this one.  Another thing that I liked was that many of the shots were set up in unique ways, some adding humor to the situation, such as when Mr. Elton sits between Emma and Mr. Knightley to talk about Harriet’s sore throat.

The proposal scene between Emma and Mr. Knightley was very good.  It started out awkward, then moved into an interview that was driven by care and friendship.  I think that’s what is so satisfying about the relationship between Knightley and Emma–it is based on mutual affection and friendship which has spanned years.  It’s lasting and based on a thorough knowledge of the other person.

I would highly suggest this movie to all the ladies out there!

Possible Objections:

  1. In the gypsy scene the d-word is used a couple of times.

Rated: PG

Rating: 4 1/2 Stars

Until next time…




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