Non-Austen Films for Austen Fans: The Buccaneers, Episodes 1-2

So Happy Indepedence Day. It is time for another:

So after you watch every single version of Jane Austen movies, what do you have to watch next?

Hmm…I don’t know!

That’s why I started this list, to have non-Austen films that Austen fans can enjoy.

I can’t stop watching!

I was trying to decide what to  post today and was split between Poldark, which takes place after the Revolutionary War and The Buccaneers which is about a group of ladies “invading” England. After a long deliberation, Buccaneers won out.

So I first stumbled on this about six or five years ago when I was scrolling through Amazon Prime looking for the next thing to watch.

I started with one episode and was hooked!

The one thing that really struck me when I was watching it was all the famous actors in it. I mean there is the amazing James Frain as Julius, Duke of Trevennick; why, why, why hasn’t he been in a Jane Austen film yet?

Then there is Spy Kids mama Carla Gugino who plays the lead, Annabel “Nan” St. George.

And Greg Wise, (best known to Jane Austen fans as Mr. Willoughby), as the strong upstanding, Greg Thwaite.

This miniseries is what I consider to be “what would have happened if the Austen characters married the wrong people.” You know the Wickhams, Willoughbys, Churchills, Thorpes, etc.; of the world.

The horror! I can’t even think of it.

So I have yet to read the book and am going to focus on the movie only. There are a few changes-which you will see.

So the series takes place in the Gilded Age, after the Civil War. The St. Georges have become extremely wealthy in the aftermath, Mr. St. George being the third wealthiest man on Wall Street. They have moved to Newport Beach but find it hard to enter society as they are “coarse” and “nouveau riche”. It doesn’t matter that the St. George’s have more money that a whole coastline of “old money” people put together, they are not considered polite society. This hurts Mrs. St. George who wants nothing more than to finally be accepted.

Mrs. St. George was actually from a “good family” and married beneath her (as Nan shares), but her husband made a ton of money in the aftermath of the war. She reminds me a lot of Mrs. Bennet, but isn’t so worried about marrying her daughters off as she is in hoping they can get invited into society.

She is joined as an outcast with Elmsworths (who I don’t know what their money is in, I don’t think they say. The housekeeper from Two and a Half Men plays the mother-but all I can see her as is the grumpy housekeeper in that show and the murdered one in Murder She Wrote.) And rounding out this group are the Clossons. Mr. Closson met his wife in Brazil and married her, making his money in the ranches and plantations she owns combined with the casinos in New York that he owns. Their daughter, Conchita has an even harder time with society as all assume her to be a “dark-skinned Native”. So-yes no one wants them.

However, Conchita is invited to the right parties as she is newly engaged to Lord Richard Marabel, and everyone wants a real English Lord at their party. Remember A Change of Fortune?

Mrs. St. George, feeling desperate, hires an English governess to instruct her younger daughter Nan, and give her family some ummph. Ms. Laura Testvalley arrives from England, happy as the St. George’s not knowing any better are paying her a small fortune. She’s doing way better than she would  have in England. Too bad Jane Fairfax wasn’t born later.

Ms. Testvalley tries to instruct the girls and smooth out their rough edges. But they still are not invited anywhere.

It sucks!

Ms. Testvalley knows Lord Richard as she was governess to his sisters, and I don’t know if this is true but I always felt they had a “thing” in the past. They seem too close, if you know what I mean.

The big party of the summer is happening, and the only one who gets an invite is Conchita, and only because her fiance is Lord Richard. Elizabeth “Lizzy” Elmsworth and Nan’s older sister Virginia St. George, pretend to be Lord Richard’s sisters so they can go to the party, but they are later found out. Awkward!

Nan cannot go as she is not “out” in society, watching this I do get where Mrs.Bennet is coming from. It isn’t fun when you are stuck at home because your older sister isn’t married. Nan is adorable, fun, but a young girl. She thinks being a mistress is “exciting” as you have freedom and can do what you want. She even idealizes Ms. Testvalley’s life. Ms. Testavalley tries to help her with her naivety, but there is only so much she can do.

That is not what life is like.

Mrs. St. George is bemoaning  that she cannot get invited anywhere, when Ms. Testavalley comes up with the idea of a London Season. She understands the American class system better than Mrs. St. George and knows that if the ladies go to England, when they return-everyone will be begging them to attend their functions. Mrs. St. George agrees and they are off.

In England, Conchita marries Richard and meets the family. There are huge issues as they come from very different cultures. Richard is the black sheep of the family, a gambler, loose with everything, etc. He thought marrying the wealthy Conchita would solve everything, but that’s not how it works out for him. Conchita’s family expects him to take care of their daughter and actually work for a living.

Ugh! Work!

Richard was kicked out of the family home and Conchita allows him back in as his father would never kick out a woman, especially one as beautiful as her.

Richard exits the picture, using the allowance she gets to live his life however he wants, and leaving the fiery, fun-loving Conchita in a cold, damp, mansion with the uptight well-to-do family.

Meanwhile, the St. Georges and Lizzy have come to England. Ms. Testavalley wants them to do well and enlists another expatriate, her old friend Ms. March. Ms. Testavalley just wants aid in teaching them proper manners and how to follow society rules, but Ms. March has a better idea. Ms. March was once a young girl who came to England for a season, and it was hard to get into English society. In fact she was going to marry Lord Brightlingsea, Richard’s father, but was left at the altar. It seems that there was some nefarious plot, (I personally think that Lady Brightlingsea found a way to trick him, but that’s just my opinion.) Ms. March wants revenge and plans to do so by getting all the girls with wealthy, important, high-society men.

The girls visit with Conchita who is very unhappy, lonely, and determined to take a lover to ease the days. She loves having the girls to visit with her and brighten her days. She takes them to visit with Guy Thwaite. Every girl loves him but he is “unmarriageable” as he has no money. When his mother died she left him £20000 or £50000 (depending on who is telling the story). His father invested it and lost it all. Many a lady wouldn’t mind marrying him as he is handsome, intelligent, and comes from a great family-but he refuses them all as he wants to have his own money, he doesn’t want to just live off his woman.

This kind of character gives me mixed feelings. He reminds me a lot of Carl from O Pioneers! and both characters infuriate me. One one hand you have to admire a guy who wants to have his act together, provide a life for his family instead of mooching off the woman, and be a man. But on the other hand, having so much pride you waste so much time. And you might lose the girl to another.

Guy and Nan hit it off right away and she falls hard for him. He likes her, but even though she is extremely wealthy, he wants to have his own  money so he’d be worthy of his future wife.

I admire you and I’m angry with you. I’m angire or admry

So Lady Brightlingsea is not a happy woman. Conchita is pregnant, but Richard is never home and the money she brings in is not as much as this family would like to fill their extremely diminished coffers. And to add to it, her older son, the good one, has given no heir and has no interest to marry. He’s been involved with an older woman, Idina Hatton. Idina needs money and rents her cottage out to Ms. March, who brings the girls there. There they have fun and throw little parties.

From Emma (1996)

Nan is bored of those things-as she can’t really join in-and she and Ms. Testvalley go down to the countryside where Nan runs into Julius, Duke of Trevennick. Julius has been breaking hearts of all the ladies as no one can pin him down. He isn’t interested in any women as all they want are his title, he seems sweet but there is also something off-putting about his love of clocks and solitude. Like I get your an introvert, but it seems a tad…controlling. I don’t know.

Moving on…Nan impresses him as she has no clue who he is, loves the ruins as much as him, and is just full of innocence, childlike wonder, imagination, feelings, etc. She’s like a mix between Marianne Dashwood and  Catherine Morland.

The Duke is taken with her and invites her to tea-the two talking and he continuing to be struck by her.

Meanwhile, Virginia and Lizzy have both been struck by Lord Seadown’s “sad eyes”, “brooding nature”, and melancholy demeanor. Oh man, you know the type.

Lord Seadown on the hand has been doing some calculating. His extremely dwindling coffers compared to the GNP of the Elmsworth and the St. George’s. Virginia is a better choice as her family has a lot more money. Seadown boasts of his plan to his brother and how he’ll have the better deal.

One day Lizzy, Virginia, and Conchita are having a little party, when Idina shows up, angry that Seadown stood her up. She makes a scene and yells at Virginia. Virginia is a classy lady, but Lizzy won’t stand the way she is being treated and lets all know that Virginia and Seadown are engaged.

The two marry and Virgina is ecstatic over being married to her love, Lord Seadown, becoming the future Lady Seadown, and winning over her rival Lizzy. But the marriage happiness is short lived as Seadown reveals that he only married her for her money and will be using it to redo the West Wing.

Replace beauty with money

Virginia is crestfallen, but that’s not the worst of it-Lord Seadown just uses her money-giving all love and affection to Idina.

So now we are left with little Nan. Guy is extremely interested, but lets her know that he is not going to marry anyone without money. He also thinks that Nan is too young at 18. He is going to South America for two years to work on the railroad and make his fortune. Nan insists that she is not too young, as her mother married at 18. But he says no and walks out of her life.

You’re making a huge mistake!!!!!!! Come back, at least propose!!! Don’t leave her!!!!!!!

Julian on the other hand is very interested in Nan and goes to speak to her but finds her out. He instead speaks to Ms. Testvalley about his wanting to marry Nan. Now in an interesting twist Ms. Testvalley really discourages him against. She warns him that Nan is young and he should wait as in a year or two-after she’s grown up a bit, she could be an incredibly different person.

This reminds me of Mrs. Bennet and Mr. Bennet. If Mr. Bennet had not been taken in by a pretty face but really spent his time getting to know Mrs. Bennet or maybe had a longer engagement he would have realized she isn’t the right person for him. But they both were young and didn’t think.

Julian ignores Ms. Testvalley and goes to Nan who is crushed and heartbroken and lonely. When Julian proposes he gives her a puppy! A PUPPY!!! There is a guy who knows how to do a good proposal, Mr. Darcy could take notes. She’s sad, crushed, alone as her sister and friends are married ad gone and she says yes.

So Nan becomes the crown jewel for Ms. March and Ms. Testvalley as she snagged the Duke, just under a Prince. Wowee!!

Yes the americans have won and conquered the English marriage market.

So here we have as I see it-Lord Richard is nothing but Mr. Wickham. Charming on the surface but a gambling bounder who only cares about having a good time for himself. We get a glimpse of how life would have been if Wickham succeeded in marrying Georgina or Miss Gray.

Then we have Lord Seadown. He reminds me of Mr. Elliot or Mr. Willoughby. But are as calculating when it comes to maintain their fortunes/way of lifestyle. Either would do all they can to keep it.

Smarming and plotting away.

And then we have the Duke. I’m not sure who he best lines up with, he seems like a nice catch…but I guess we will just have to wait and see.

So I was going to do the whole series in one post, but there is just too much. I’ll do a secondary post on the last three episodes.

In other news, I’ll be spending this weekend with my niece. I usually post every three days, but I might have to postpone as I don’t what we will be doing. I hope you all have a wonderful 4th of July, whether it is just another day:

Or celebrating our Independence!

For more Non-Austen Films for Austen Fans, go to Non-Austen Films for Austen Fans: Stardust (2007)

For more Gilded Age, go to Book Club Picks: Julie

For more 4th of July posts, go to Let Freedom Ring

So I like to joke and have fun, but I’m going to end this post on a serious note. I just want to thank all past and present who have served to protect not only my country and my rights, but those around the world.

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They’re Moving From Planet to Planet…After They’ve Consumed Every Natural Resource They Move On…and We’re Next: Independence Day (1999)

They’re like locusts. They’re moving from planet to planet… their whole civilization. After they’ve consumed every natural resource they move on… and we’re next.”

I had never seen this movie all the way through. The only parts I had seen was when Bill Pullman gives his speech on a top movie presidents’ list they had on TV Guide in honor of the 4th of July, and of course-that last line about fireworks by Will Smith.

Well it was time to finally take a watch.

On July 2, 1996 an enormous alien ship takes place outside major cities all around the world, this impacts our four groups of characters.

Russell Casse is a Vietnam veteran and former pilot. He has a crop-dusting company, but due to his alcoholism he doesn’t do anything well. He and his family notice the ships and move their trailer out of there.

Captain Steven Hiller (Will Smith) is a marine and fighter pilot who dreams of being a NASA pilot. He lives with his stripper girlfriend and her son. He’s supposed to have the weekend off, but when he sees the ships-he heads to base.

David Levinson (Jeff Goldblum) is a MIT-educated technological expert. He is still in love with his ex-wife and grumpy/mad at the world. He doesn’t believe the alien stories at first but after he sees it with his own eyes he starts focusing on their communications sent. He discovers that it is a countdown and travels with his dad to Washington D.C. to warn his wife.

President Thomas J. Whitmore, (Bill Pullman) is being crucified in the press as he was a War Hero who knows zip about running a country in a “peaceful world”. He is prepared to spend the holiday with his daughter (as his wife is out of town for work) and best friend/communications director, Constance Spano (David’s wife).

David warns the President and the group manage to just barely make it out before the click is zero and all the ships disintegrate the cities.

They send the military in to shoot, like Captain Steve Miller, but the alien’s advanced weaponry is too much for them. All are killed, except Miller. He manages to knock an alien out and carry it with him. He meets up with the Casse family and they head for Area 51.

Miller’s girlfriend, Jasmine (the stripper), manages to save herself and her son. They pull out with a few survivors they find in LA (including the president’s wife) and head off to Miller’s base. They find it destroyed,and drive off-heading to Area 51.

Air Force One-containing David, his father, Spano, and the President-head to Area 51 after a UFO conspiracy is revealed. It turns out that an alien ships such as these we see today landed in 1947, and the government has been testing and studying it under, Dr. Brackish Okun.

When the Dr. studies Miller’s alien, it wakes up. It uses Okun to speak, controlling him, then kills him. Later it merges with the President to read his mind. But when the Secret Service kill the alien, it turns out that the President was able to get into his mind as well and knows thier plans.

They’re here already! You’re next! You’re next, You’re next…!

Nothing they have seem to stop the aliens, but then David comes up with a plan. They will inject a virus into the mother ship and it will cause the forcefields to go down and allow them to stop them.

David and Miller volunteer to head up to space-with the President calling in every single person who has flown a plane before to help fight, including himself.

Will they succeed?

Watch to Find Out!

Such an amazing film. I was totally sucked into it. I couldn’t stop watching and will be seeing this either every 4th of July or October.

To start Horrorfest VII from the beginning, go to It’s the End of the World: The Birds (1963)

For the previous post, go to It Should Have Been a Movie or a Miniseries: American Gothic (2016)

For more aliens, go to A Survivor… Unclouded By Conscience, Remorse, or Delusions of Morality: Alien (1979)

For more Bill Pullman, go to A Tender Toll-Booth Token: While You Were Sleeping (1995)

For more Jeff Goldblum, go to Just Follow the Screams: The Lost World (1997)

Proud to Be an American

Happy 4th of July!

Well today is a special day in our history. Today not only marks the birth of a new country but a choice that we were no longer to be owned and ruled by kings, instead giving us regular people the power to choose who we want.

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While not ever country may view this day as special:

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But I sure do.

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So however you like to celebrate, whether you treat this day seriously or have fun:

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Enjoy your day, but always remember what it stands for.

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For more on the 4th of July, go to Every Heart Beats True for the Red, White & Blue

For more holiday posts, go to Summertime

 For more on Mr. Smith Goes to Washington, go to It’s A Fan World After All

To Win a Part of My Heart

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27) Five Ways to Win Your Heart

Now winning a heart is a long, and laborious thing. There is much it involves, but I say this five things put you ahead of everyone else. 🙂

And these are in no particular order.

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1) Be a Movie Fan

I’m sure all of you are aware of how much I love movies. And all movies. I watch every genre, from the 1920s to the present time.

So to me it is important that you not only love watching films (I know some people who don’t and I think that is cra-A-zy!), but you have to be appreciative of those made in the past.

Now do we have to feel the same way about every film? No. As long as you are willing to view my favorites with an open mind, I’m good. SaneMovie

Except for Star Wars, if you don’t like that then forget it.

In my case Boy

In my case Boy

Now in my case as I love films, you know I quote them ALL the time. You don’t have to do it, but you have to love me doing it.

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For more on my film obsession, go to She’s Still Preoccupied With 1985

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2) Read

I love to read, I read all the time. I love talking about books, I love being with books, and I have a horrible addiction to buying them.

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I need someone who is not only able to understand this, but just as obsessed.

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🙂 Dreaming of that.

For more of my love of books, go to One of Many

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3) Listen

I couldn’t find a good picture of listening that I liked so I chose this gif from The Italian Job. Before he kisses her, Charlie listens to everything Stella has to say about her dad. Her anger at him for not quitting his thieving lifestyle; her guilt in not being nicer or having a more loving relationship; and her belief that her father never loved her. Charlie listens to everything and then tells her what her father told him, that he regretted not being a better father to her. He then comforts her, giving her a friendly kiss on the forehead.

I want someone like that, who will sense I’m upset and really listen to everything I’m saying. Not trying to justify it, fix it, but just give comfort in their presence.

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4) Get in to the Holiday Spirit

So you all know I love holidays. Every year I do 14 of my favorite Romantic Moments for Valentine’s Day, list of favorite characters that match with the animal from that year’s Chinese New Year, 17 of my favorite Irish characters for Saint Patrick’s Day, my favorite paintings of Christ for Easter, a celebration of May 4th, 31 days of horror films for Halloween, a thankful post for Thanksgiving, and 25 films of Christmas.

I have also done a post in celebration of Martin Luther King Jr. B-day, Memorial DayFather’s Day, the 4th of July, the day time travel was thought of by Doc Brown, remembering the 5th of November, and Veterans’ Day,

So while you don’t have to be big on the holiday spirit, you do need to be willing to come along for the ride. Whether it is eating heart-shaped pizza, baking soda bread, dying eggs, having a Star Wars marathon, going trick-or-treating, dressing up, watching horror films, baking pies, watching Christmas movies, singing Christmas carols, cutting down a Christmas tree, baking cookies, etc; you need be in the passenger seat of my holiday express train ride.

For more on my favorite holidays, go to It’s a Jolly Holiday

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5) Be a Christian

I’m a Christian, as I have stated before, and I want a Christian guy. My faith is very important to me, and I want someone who understands this. Someone, who when I’m struggling or hurting, will instantly pray for me.

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To start the 30 Day Challenge from the beginning, go to Musical Madness

For the previous post, go to Hunk-a-Thon

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For more on my idea of the perfect guy, go to How to Meet the Perfect Guy

 

Every Heart Beats True for the Red, White & Blue

“You’re a grand old flag, you’re a high flying flag
And forever in peace may you wave.
You’re the emblem of the land I love.
The home of the free and the brave.
Ev’ry heart beats true ‘neath the Red, White and Blue,
Where there’s never a boast or brag.
Should auld acquaintance be forgot,
Keep your eye on the grand old flag.”

                                                                             -You’re a Grand Old Flag

Happy 4th of July everybody!

4th of july Captain America

Today we celebrate the birth of our country.

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A country that was going to be different than any other. One that wouldn’t have a king with all power, but a President with limited power, and the people would be the ones to hold sway. A county based on giving people rights and allowing them to make their own decisions. Happy Birthday United States of America!

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So while you’re eating your BBQ and shooting off fireworks, never forget what this holiday stands for.

freedomlibertyneverforgetMrSmithgoestowashington

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For more on the 4th of July, go to You’re Gonna Need a Bigger Boat: Jaws (1975)

For more on Captain America, go to Do the Right Thing

For more holidays, go to Dear Dad

You’re Gonna Need a Bigger Screen: Happy 40th to JAWS

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If you were following me last year, you probably saw my post in October reviewing the film and declaring how much of an enormous fan I am of the movie. I’ve probably seen it a gazillion times, have seen both sequels, and even read the book it’s based on.

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And to further that, every 4th of July I bring it out to watch again.

love it

So when I saw the ad that it was coming back to the big screen, I was estatic and bought my ticket to see it right away.

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There weren’t that many people interested, I mean Jurassic World is all anybody wants to see lately. And I can’t blame them, I saw it twice already (come back in October for my review). But come on, Jaws is one of the best films ever made!

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And when I saw it for the first time on the big screen, it was fantastic!

Double double yay

There were quite a few things I never noticed on a small screen, for instance two shooting stars in the background, but most of all it was just the experience. The music was better, the action was better, the shark was waaaay creepier as he was ginormous on screen.

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I LOVED IT! It was an amazing experience and I recommend it for any fans out there Don’t miss out but see Jaws in theaters.

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For more Jaws, read my review You’re Gonna Need a Bigger Boat: Jaws (1975)