Movie Review: Lost in Austen
By, Miguelina Perez
A delightful and decidedly British production, “Lost in Austen” is a four-part 2008 British television series written by Guy Andrews as a fantasy adaptation of Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen. The movie loosely follows the plot of Austen’s book, in which a modern girl, Ms. Amanda Price, craves romance and true love. As an answer to her strong desires, she is transported to the world of Pride and Prejudice.
The cast of “Lost in Austen” comprises Jemima Rooper as Amanda Price, Elliot Cowan as Mr. Darcy, Hugh Bonneville as Mr. Bennet, Alex Kingston as the delightful but often-trying Mrs. Bennet, Morven Christie as Jane Bennett, and Tom Bison as Mr. Bingley.
Before entering the world of P&P, Amanda Price is discontent and lacking something in her humdrum life. As she says: “I do like everyone else. I take it on the chin.”
She argues with her mum that her boyfriend lacks the qualities she needs, because she has learned standards of manners from reading Jane Austen so much. Her mum’s response is that not everyone will be a Darcy and that she should settle for less.
Amanda meets Elizabeth Bennet one night in her bathroom. Elizabeth Bennet had just come through a mysterious door in Amanda’s bathroom wall and was curious about the modern world.
Amanda, who craves the world of P&P, decides to go through the door to investigate Elizabeth’s claim that Regency England existed beyond the door. When Amanda crosses the door, it closes and she finds herself trapped in the home of the Bennets. Elizabeth is likewise trapped in Amanda’s time.
From the beginning of this fable, it is clearly visible that both ladies are seeking something different and that they feel they do not belong in their own times. When Elizabeth is seen for the second time in Amanda’s bathroom, before Amanda crosses over, she is playing with the light switch and is amazed at such clever modern devices.
Soon after Amanda’s appearance in Regency England, her intrusion starts the ball spiraling out of control and the story veers away from the P&P‘s original plot. The charming result gives us different views of a misunderstood Wickham and the pansy Mr. Bingley, who later punches Mr. Darcy for intruding in his love affair with Jane Bennett.
In Jane Austen’s novel, Bingley falls in love with Jane, but is advised by Darcy that the connection is not of benefit to him and his family name. In “Lost in Austen,” he is likewise advised. He departs Netherfield Park, leaving the bereft Jane to marry the Bennet family’s distant and highly unpleasant cousin Mr. Collins in order to save her family from poverty.
A comedy of errors pursues the whole cast of characters as Amanda tries her best to make amends to her meddling and get the novel’s plot back on track. However, she did not count on falling in love with the seemingly cold-hearted Mr. Darcy, or Darcy falling in love with her.
This film is definitely worth watching, and it will transport viewers into the seemingly magical world of Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice with a decidedly touching twist. You can purchase the movie at Amazon.com.
Meet the Reviewer
Ms. Miguelina Perez is a writer, and jewelry artist. She earned her Bachelor of Arts degree in English from the University of the District of Columbia. As a jewelry artist one of her lariats was showcased in the San Antonio Express-News. She has won several awards including a critical Writing award for an essay on the gender roles of Mark Twain’s Huckleberry Finn and Louisa May Alcott’s Little Women.
It was during her high school years at the school’s library that she first encountered her first romance mystery writer – Ms. Victoria Holt and then Ms. Phyllis J. Whitney. Her love of romance novels stems from those discoveries, especially the Romance mystery genre.
Several of her poems have been published in anthologies, and she was named “Poet of Year in 1995”. She finished her first book, The Vicar’s Deadly Sin – a Regency romance mystery, the first of a seven-part serial based on the Seven Deadly Sins.
Currently, she is editing the sequel to the Vicar’s Deadly Sin, “Angel’s Lust.” Her next project is a contemporary romance thriller called “A Hero of Her Own.”
You can read Miguelina's "Entertainment Buzz" column the 3rd Saturday here at Pandora's Box Gazette. Have you watched Lost in Austen? What are your thoughts on the movie? Are you a Jane Austen fan?