10 years of celebrating Jane Austen (and a few other things!)
10 Years! I can’t believe it. I wasn’t even sure if I’d still be blogging all these years later when I started; but here I am.
I want to say thank you to all of you who have been a part of my blogging journey these past 10 years! I also want to say a special thank you to some of the people who have been big supporters!
A.M.B, ashwillbiologist, Audra’s Book Blogging, Belle, Bibliophile89, caite92lovelythoughts, Christina Boyd, Christina Morland, Countess Parure, Elaine Howlin, Elsie Wells, JASNA EWANID, Jessica Ware, Karen M. Cox, Joy Thompson, lenoremarie34, Lost Opinions, MadsenCreations, Melody Faris, Middle Hyrule, Modesto Jane Con, Ms. Austen is My Homegirl, Northanger Soapworks, Ophelia, the Pretty Poems, ps_hansen_writes, P. S. I Love Rom Coms Podcast, SewMelissaWrites, Sophia Rose, Susan Joy Clark, Tom Austin, What the Austen, and everyone else who has read, liked, or commented!
And to celebrate, as usual, I decided to watch + review Austenland (2013) with my 14 year old niece.
I’m still not sure if this is helping to convert her to liking Jane Austen, but I’m still hoping!
This year I had planned to watch and review Pride and Prejudice (2005) but we only had a few weeks with her and even then we ran out of time. It was the night before she had to leave to return home and I needed a shorter Jane Austen film to watch. I ran through the minutes of the different Jane Austen adaptions and the shortest one is Mansfield Park (2007), but if we watched
that then I might turn her off from Austen altogether.
So I quickly cast a wider net, and discovered that Austenland is only 97 minutes. Not only does it work best time-wise but it is one of my favorites.
Jane Hayes is a giant Jane Austen fan and decides to get out of the grayness of her life (and love life) and go to Austenland- a Regency inspired getaway where you can pretend to be in an Austen novel, go to a ball, and find you own Mr. Darcy ending. Things however, do not go as planned. She ends up having the cheaper package and getting the fuzzy end of the lollipop. She starts to fall for Martin, one of the handymen at the resort, but he ends up dumping her because she is enjoying “their world” too much. (Seriously dude? I’m paying for this vacation-of course I’m going to enjoy it.) Anyways…she decides she is going to take charge of her own story and be the best Austen heroine she can be! Will she get her Mr. Darcy? Will she have the vacation of her dreams? Or will she decide she needs to stop her Jane Austen fascination?
This won’t be a full review as I reviewed it last Sunday, but you can read the full review by clicking here. Instead this will just my niece and mine’s thoughts while watching it. For this I refer to my niece as “G“.
Okay so here we go…
In the beginning of the film we are introduced to our main character, Jane Hayes (Keri Russell). She loves Jane Austen, even wanting to watch Pride and Prejudice (1995) when her boyfriend is trying to get close to her.
G: (Boyfriend tries to kiss Jane) Hahaha. Denied.
Yup, nothing gets between a girl and her Darcy.
Present life isn’t going so well at the moment as her ex-boyfriend hits on her and harasses her.
G: (Ex-boyfriend slaps Jane’s butt) OMG! That loser
Me: I know, right!
Jane decides to take the plunge and go to Austenland.
G: Austenland seems like fun. We should go. Is it real?
Me: No. I wish though. I would have my bags packed in a moment.
Jane makes it to Austenland but finds a few surprises. She does not get be vacation of her dreams
G: Miss Erstwhile? (Makes scrunched “ew” face)…Oooh she has the basic package. Omg! Look at her hair!
Me: I know it is so severe.
We met Elizabeth Charming on the way to Austenland but as we spend more and more time with her she quickly become my niece’s favorite. And how could she not with lines like this
MissElizabeth Charming: I sure would like you to turn me upside down in the garden
Miss Elizabeth Charming: Is there something in my eye? (Shoves Mr. Nobley into her breasts)
G: She’s my favorite character.
She also likes Mr. Nobley!!!! Yay!!!
G: [Looking at Mr. Nobley] Isn’t he the guy from that other movie we watched?
Me: Yes, he was Mr. Tilney in Northanger Abbey.
G: He’s cute!
Me: He is indeed!
As things get worse for Jane she gets lonely and starts to get close to Martin.
G: Uuuuhh! No!
And when they kiss…
G: No!!! What about Mr. Nobley!! Get with Mr. Nobley!!!!
But Martin and Jane are not destined to stay together and a new guy comes in to town, Captain East.
G: He [Captain East] looks like the guy in Criminal Minds.
Me: Shermer Moore?
G: If that’s the guy who plays Derek. Then yeah.
Jane is to be sent home for bringing a cell phone but is saved by Miss Amelia Heartwright, another lady at Austenland (and a platinum patron) who takes the fall for her. In return Amelia asks Jane to help her to get with Captain East. Amelia tries to be covert, but just looks silly.
G: [Laughing at Amelia] She runs so funny!
They decide to hold a theatrical and Jane picks Mr. Nobley so that Amelia and East can be together. She and Mr. Nobely have a moment.
Jane Hayes: You’re the resident Mr. Darcy. C’mon you’re every girl’s fantasy.
Mr. Nobley: So I’m your fantasy?
They do the play and it is terrible. Elizabeth Charming shoots Amelia in the eye, they all “die” terribly, and it is just laughable.
G: [Laughing] Why is Captain East taking off his shirt?!
Jane and Nobely have a romantic moment and she promises him the first dance at the ball. The next night they go to the ball and Nobley confesses his love to her, but she rejects him for Martin.
G: No this can’t be the end! She chose him [Martin] over Nobley?!! The country stable boy and granny hopper?!!
The next day Jane is going to go home when she is stopped at the airport by Martin and Mr. Nobley. She declines both of them and returns home. While back in her apartment she receives a visitor, Mr. Nobley, who traveled all the way from England to bring her, her sketchbook.
My niece’s final conclusion? She loved it!!!! In fact she was a lot less vocal about this movie than the others as she was so engrossed. I definitely recommend this film for anyone to watch as it is so well done, but it’s also great for people you are trying to introduce to Jane Austen.
The 10th anniversary is tin, aluminum, or diamonds. As usual I look through the past years and try to find some posts that fit that theme. They aren’t my favorite posts, but the first ones I could find that fit the theme.
So thank you all for the past 10 years of awesomeness, and here’s to many more!
And a very special thank you to all who follow, comment, like, subscribe, etc. I wish I could mention you all by name, but even though I can’t, as it would be a really long list, just know I appreciate you all!!
I don’t know if she will like it, but she enjoyed Sense and Sensibility, so I’m confident she won’t hate it.
I will give a quick synopsis for those who have never sent the film or read the book. Northanger Abbey was the first of Jane Austen’s books to be written and is kind of a parody of gothic novels and a saltire on society. In the story Catherine Morland is a minister’s daughter who loves to read and has an overactive imagination. She is asked to accompany family friends to Bath and while there her life becomes a bit like a novel as she meets the mysterious Tilney family, of which one son she finds delightful and handsome, Mr. Tilney. She also has another man vying for her affections, a more crude and brutish man, Mr. Thorpe. She is later given an opportunity to stay with the Tilneys in their home Northanger Abbey and wonders if there is a dark secret there. Catherine begins investigating but is there really a mystery or has her overactive imagination just struck again?
So the film starts off with the great quote from the beginning of the novel:
“No one who had ever seen Catherine Morland in her infancy would have supposed her born to be an heroine.”
I love that quote. I feel it right away connects you to Catherine as most of us are just average people.
G: What’s a heroine?
Me: A female hero.
The film then progresses to talking about Cathrine more how she was plain and more interested in boy’s things than girls, but around 15 she started to care more about her appearance and other things. Her parents were known to say:
“Catherine grows quite a good-looking girl—she is almost pretty today…”
G: Don’tlie to her.
My niece can be really mean sometimes. I think Felicity Jones is so cute and very pretty.
I also love that quote to “be almost pretty”:
G: Her little sister is so annoying.
Me: Yeah the little sister is very sassy.
So as the film progresses, the Allen’s ask Catherine to come along with them. We both agreed that we wished we had a family friend who wouldn’t ask us on a vacation like that. I mean at least my niece has me, but I wish I had had someone do that for me when I was young.
So in between the action with Catherine every time she reads she imagines herself in the book and we have a dream or imagination while reading sequence. I really like this, but my niece was not a fan.
G: This is weird.
So Catherine and Co. arrive in Bath and when they go out the next day they run into Mr. Tilney.
G: Is that the guy she’s gonna end up with?
Wow, she was sharp. At least she’s not opposed to him like she was to Colonel Brandon last year. But then again who could ever resist JJ Feild?
G: I really like their [Mrs. Allen and Catherine] dresses.
I totally agree, as even though Catherine isn’t the wealthiest Austen heroine, nor the poorest, I like her dresses the most.
I love how Mr. Tilney is able to clear the room for the ladies with a glare. He’s like get out of the way, this table is for the ladies!
So as Catherine dances with Mr. Tilney, she notices another man watching her and questions Mr. Tilney about him.
“Catherine: [Puzzled] Why does he look at us?
Mr. Tilney: I imagine he likes what he sees.
Catherine: [Incredulous] You don’t mean me?”
G: No duh!
Yeah, Catherine is pretty naive. Although in her defense she’s never really been called pretty before so it is easy not to see it in yourself.
Mr. Tilney decides to sassy and sarcastic (as usual):
“Mr. Tilney: So, tell me, what will you write in your journal tonight? ‘Friday, went to the Lower Rooms, wore my sprigged muslin dress with blue trimmings, and looked very pretty, though I say so myself. Danced with one man, was stared at by another much more handsome.”
Me: Who do you think is more handsome, Mr. Tilney orhim? [points to Mr. Thorpe]
G: Not him [points to Thorpe], he looks weird. I like that other guy, what’s his name? Christopher?
Me: Mr. Tilney, Henry Tilney.
We have another dream sequence and at first G wasn’t into it, but then we started talking about how we act when we read.
G: I like to imagine myself as a character or create my own.
Me: Me too.
Look at that, we both be Catherine Morlands.
The next day Mrs. Allen and Catherine are out and they run into Mrs. Thorpe and Isabella Thorpe.
G: She [Isabella] looks mean.
Me: Well, she’s not a nice. And look at her dress, during the day ladies wore a fichu or lace to cover themselves and only at night would wear something so low cut, but Isabella is not following the rules.
The next day the girls are out checking to see if Mr. Tilney is still visiting the Upper Rooms. They don’t see his signature and leave, being followed by two men. The men go a different way and instead of steering away, Isabella wants to cross paths with them again.
G:She wants torun into those men, that’s why she has her boobs out.
Isabella is definitely on the prowl!
They run into James Morland (Catherine Morland’s brother) and John Thorpe (Isabella’s brother). James is super into Isabella and John tries to get with Catherine.
G: John Thorpelooks so crazy! He’s so creepy.
Me: It is because he has such a heavy brow.
G: Yeah but it is the way he stares at her, with his eyes-it is so crazy [mimics John Thorpe].
Me: Yeah, he makes me think of those tiktok videos when they say do you want to look creepy?Thenlower your head and look up with your eyes.
G: He does!
That night they go to a dance and Mr. Tilney arrived with a woman in tow.
G: [Screams]…oh it’s his sister.
The two spend the time talking and make plans to go walking the next day. The only problem is, John Thorpe has other plans. John starts with “I think I saw them leaving”, with Isabella backing him up, then he insists that in this brief passage in the street from far away that he heard them saying they will be gone.
Me: Do you hear that, first he asks Catherine does Mr. Tilney have a certain type of horses and then he’s all I heard them say they will be gone all day. Such a liar!
Catherine insists they wouldn’t act that way, but then her brother interjects and makes her doubt herself.
“James Morland: My dear scatter-brained sister, haven’t you just heard him say they’re halfway to Wick Rocks?”
G: Shut up James! You’re supposed to be on my side!
Me: I know, right! James is so awful, lookhow he talks to her.
John Thorpe goes off in his phaeton with Catherine and who should they see as they go down the way.
“Catherine Morland: [Sees Mr. Tilney and Miss Tilney] Oh, Miss Tilney! [To Mr. Thorpe] Stop! Stop now! It’s Miss Tilney and her brother!
John Thorpe: There’ll be hell to pay if I tried to stop him now!
Catherine Morland: Please stop, Mr Thorpe! I’ll get down! I will!
John Thorpe: It’s not possible!
Catherine Morland: Oh!
John Thorpe: Whoa, there!
Catherine Morland: How could you deceive me so?
John Thorpe: Well, what if I did?
G: Boom! I would smack him!
Me: He definitely needs a punch in the face.
G: Get Out and Run, Catherine!
Me: She should! But she won’t as he manipulates her into feeling bad that if she leaves her brother and Isabella, they can’t ride together.
They get rained on, served them right. And the next day they go to the opera where John Thorpe tries to be romantic and fails.
“John Thorpe: Damn fine-looking woman. [To Catherine] But she’s nothing to you, you know.
G: I don’t care!
Ugh, John Thorpe!
Catherine goes to talk to the Tilneys after the opera performance and apologizes. Mr. Tilney tries to act cool, but you know he was probably driving Eleanor up the wall with his heartbroken.
G: You’re [John Thorpe] nothing to him [Mr. Tilney]
A couple days later Catherine learns of James and Isabella’s engagement. John Thorpe tries to ask Catherine, sort of.
“John Thorpe: Miss Morland, I, too, must take my leave for the present, just for the present. I’m going to accompany James to Fullerton, and then onto town to help him choose a ring.
G: I’m not going to miss you.
Me: I know, right.
“John Thorpe: Perhaps I might look for one for myself while I’m there. Do you think I should?”
So the men leave and the next time they go to a ball, Isabella states she will not dance with anyone. However, Mr. Tilney’s older brother, the rogue, enters the scene.
“Mr. Tilney: Miss Morland, allow me to introduce my brother, Captain Tilney.
Captain Tilney: [Dismissive] Charmed. [Moves away from them]
Mr. Tilney: Don’t let my brother’s ill manners offend you. That’s how he is, I’m afraid. He was ill-mannered as a baby.
Even though Isabella wasn’t supposed to be dancing as her “love” is away, she dances with Captain Tilney.
Catherine ends up being asked to go visit Northanger Abbey. We both wished we could go to a castle.
On Catherine’s last day in Bath she and Isabella go to the Upper Rooms. There Isabella hangs out with Captain Tilney.
G: Are they [Isabella and Captain Tilney] dating now?
Me: Just watch.
Catherine then travels to Northanger Abbey which is awesome and mysterious and I really, really, really want to go there one day.
G: I wish I could go to a castle. I want everyone to know the princess that I am.
So at Northanger Abbey Catherine spends a lot of fun time with the Tilneys, especially once General Tilney leaves on business. One thing Catherine had wanted to see was the portrait of Mrs. Tilney, but General Tilney kept them from the room. When Mr. Tilney goes away, Catherine takes the time to search in the room.
G: Why are we snooping around?
I alsways feel embarrassed when Catherine does this but I totally would want to do the same. Unfortunately, Mr. Tilney catches her and as you can imagine it doesn’t go well.
Catherine become even more upset when she gets a letter from her brother James who has ended his engagement as Isabella was trying to get with Captain Tilney, he has left Bath believing the two to be engaged although Eleanor does not believe her brother will, he’s not into commitment.
G: It’s because of all those low cut dresses she wore.
Then Catherine gets a letter from Isabella. Isabella tried to trade up but nothing came of it as Captain Tilney is not into commitment.
”Catherine Morland: I wish I had never known her.
Eleanor Tilney: It will soon be as if you never had.
Catherine Morland: There is one thing I can’t understand. What has Captain Tilney been about all this time? Why should he pay her such attentions and then fly off himselr?
Eleanor Tilney: He has his vanity, as well as Miss Thorpe. And he is accustomed to…having his way. Though I am surprised he should have stooped to such an easy conquest.
Catherine Morland: Really? Then I am sorry for Isabella.
Eleanor: I am sure she will be over it soon enough. “
Oh, Eleanor is just throwing shade.
So the film ends with Catherine being sent home with no escort. She doesn’t cause a scene as she thinks that Mr. Tilney told his father what she thought about him murdering his wife. After she returns home, Mr. Tilney comes after her and declares his love in the most romantic way! It is such a great scene!
So after the movie ended I asked her thoughts:
Me: Did you like it? What did you think?
G: It was good.
Me: Did you like it better than Sense and Sensibility?
G: Hmm…I don’t know.
Me: Which guy do you like the best. One of the guys from Sense and Sensibility or Mr. Tilney.
G: I don’t remember what they looked like.
Me: This one is Mr. Ferrars, Elinor’s love interest [Shows picture of Hugh Grant]. And then the other guy was the actor who played Snape.
Me: Yes, Snape.
G: I liked this guy better. I think he was cuter.
Yay! She likes Mr. Tilney and she liked the movie. My work here is done…at least for now.
If interested in a full review, click on this link. Otherwise thank you for 9 wonderful years! Happy Blogiversary!
So in 2018 I was gifted the book, Pride and Prejudice and Mistletoe. I decided to wait and read it last year, 2019, and watch & review the film. I read it and hated it.
I planned to watch the film, but to be honest after that mess of a book I wasn’t too eager. The characters were horrible and mean, Darcy and Luke (Elizabeth) hardly even speak to each other…after reading this, I felt like a real Scrooge and had zero Christmas spirit.
Thank goodness for Yuletide, or my Christmas would have been dreadful.
So I skipped watching the film and kind of forgot about it until July. July is my blogiversary, and on Instagram I ask different Jane Austen related questions and post the results. I asked who was the worst Darcy on Instagram and this was one of them picked, the person said:
“OMG this was the worst film. This film and character had no relevance to Pride and Prejudice.”
So the film starts with Darcy Fitzwilliam (Lacey Chabert) giving a Christmas gift to her street coffee barista and they talk. She is excited t hear that his son got into Stanford and she wants to help invest his money. After watching that scene I was in shock.
Who is this person? She’s kind and caring…waaaaay different from the Darcy in the book.
Then we se her with her clients, kind and caring. She is going to help her mother with the Pemberly auction She’s helping her mom plan that and is actually excited about it and Christmas.
Who are you?
In the book she didn’t get along with her parent (father disowned her when she wouldn’t marry his choice) and only returned home because of a her mother having a heart attack. It’s nice to see this being a Christmas film, and Darcy is much more interesting instead of the book already.
So Darcy started the firm with Austin, and I wouldn’t trust her sounds to me like she is going to edge her out of the company.
So Darcy is coming home and her ex, Carl is going to be there. In this they had an amicable split and broke up a month ago. They sent Carl to pick her up as he still works fopr the company. Seems weird to me, why not call a car or get a taxi. But I think that they are trying to put them together.
So Darcy’s character is way better in this, not at all like the jerk in the book. In the book she just played with Carl’s feelings.
We then flash to Luke Bennet (Brendan Penny), a cook and caterer (in the book he was a handyman). Mrs. Fitzwilliam had to take over the Pemberley auction, and hires Luke as the caterer. Mom is really nice too, everyone seemed so mean in the Fitzwilliam household in the book. Much better in the film. I mean Darcy seems really close to her family, she has only mmissd two Christmases and saw her mom last month. In the book they hardly ever spend time together. This was a fun change.
So they are going to auction off designer Christmas trees to help fund a children’s home and all are in a flutter because the previous person dropped out and they only have a few days until the event. Stress mode in overload.
Darcy’s friend Caylee (gender swap Charles Bingley) comes over for them to go out to dinner. Caylee’s new guy is Jim Bennet, who Darcy recognizes his name from his brother Luke Bennet who she used to fight with all the time. Jim Bennet is so sweet, and he is a great Jane.
They go out and Darcy and Luke run into each other. Luke is nice, but Darcy is a bit rude taking every compliment as an insult.
So Darcy and her dad have a great relationship, I actually see this as being similar to how Darcy and his father would be.
So back to the film, Luke is the caterer and both are surprised, oh Hallmark.
I like Luke. He comes to the house with a plan for the auction and some ideas, although Darcy is mad as she had a mapped out plan, but her mom likes Luke’s better. Luke is a bit of a jerk about the theme, seriously dude you already won, calm down.
So of course Darcy and Luke end up spending a lot of time together planning everything for the auction. They go out and pick up donations, meeting a lady who is also an interior decorator, they should totally hire her. But don’t? Maybe later? Weird of them to drop that and not follow through.
Carl, Darcy’s ex, sees Darcy and Luke laughing together, gets upset and sidetracks the conversation. Guys do their measuring up thing we always see, the most realistic part of any Hallmark movie.
So Darcy’s partner is trying to take over. She schedules all these partners meetings without Darcy-ha ha I thought so. Her father is very supportive and there for her, but Darcy is taken it all on her own.
Darcy goes out to the White Elephant party where Darcy unwraps an apron “I’ll Bake it, Yule eat it”. Hmm…Luke’s a caterer, I wonder when that will come into play?
Darcy talks to Luke and looks sad and tired, Luke offers to listen, and it is all very sweet. This is a much better plot than the book already. It doesn’t really seem to have anything to do with Pride and Prejudice, but at least it is more enjoyable than the book was.
Hmm…I’m starting to enjoy this.
Luke is going to take the trash out and Darcy runs into him, both under mistletoe.
Luke wants to kiss her, but Darcy declines.
Darcy’s brother Parker comes with a girl, fiance? Girlfriend? Wife? He’s a doctor and she is pregnant. This scene is cute as we see Darcy’s relationship with her brother, I’m glad as in the book she had like four brothers but no interaction with them.
So the auction is in peril again when the tree designer drops out. Mom calls Luke to pick the trees up and Darcy is mad because she was going to pick them up herself, girl have you ever carried a large Christmas tree? They heavy.
Darcy is upset with Luke but I think it is because she feels so out of control with what’s going on with work but it just comes off as rude. She tries to carry a tree by herself and knocks over several in lot. Oops.
We actually get good development between Darcy and Luke as she shares how she has so much to prove, feels so judged, that no one would think of her as serious at her father’s company etc.
Back at Darcy’s work they tell her they are keeping their decision of only expensive premiums in order to invest and Darcy can stay with that or leave the company. Way harsh.
Darcy goes to pick someting up, and sees the shop agin with the decorator and hires her and they pick up the supplies, calling Luke. Aw, Luke and Darcy are cute together. He invites Darcy to carol with him at Pemberley Square.
So something has to happen to waylay this little train. Is she going to insult him when she asks him out? Skip the ball, to go back to work? Get back with Carl?
They go caroling together with Darcy’s family. Darcy and Luke talk, sharing that his dad gave him his love and they were supposed to open a restaurant together, but he died before. So now he is continuing the dream with him.
From The Wolf Man (1941)
Caylee spots the two under the mistletoe, again. It is nice to see that mistletoe wasn’t just a cheeky title, but comes up multiple times. Darcy tells him he is every ounce who his dad is and kisses him. Aw!
That night they plan to decorate the tree and invite Luke to stay with them for the tree trimming. Darcy puts the tree topper on with help from Luke, aww.
I’m actually surprised they have such a little slender tree. They have a ton of money, you think they would have something spectacular.
Anyways, Darcy gets called away by her assistant, as Austin is poaching clients and trying to push her out. Darcy is down why as she rejects that she trusted them and Luke tells her it’s okay to put your trust in people. Awwww! So cute! They adorable.
Darcy and Luke go to the youth center and see all the good the charity ball gives. They even have a youth choir-oh they should totally sing at the event like in The Bishop’s Wife.
Luke after seeing the youth center decides to not collect a fee, just to pay for staff and food all else goes to the auction. What a nice guy. Too bad these Hallmark men don’t exist in real life. Darcy comes up with a new name for Luke’s restaurant, Luke’s Table. Meh. Luke’s sounds better, but maybe they can’t because of copyright infringement.
So George, his lady, Darcy, Luke, Mom, Dad, Carl, and Charlotte all work together to get everything finished in time. Everyone reaches out to Darcy, even Carl, but she doesn’t tell anyone what is going on. She should really talk to someone, like her dad.
Speaking of which, that night Darcy and her dad share a moment over Luke’s pie. Her dad again tries to encourage her to talk.
The next day Darcy comes to help Luke and he is the only one working on it, he doesn’t have any staff? They are so cute together and look Darcy is wearing the apron she won.
The two have a much better relationship than in the book and I can believe that they are falling in love.
Caylee tries to encourage Darcy to continue things with Luke, but Darcy is like nah-she doesn’t think Luke is interested.
It’s super obvious!
Caylee also encourages Darcy, like her father did, that maybe she needs a new job and location.
The staff are unable to come to the event, so they end up filling in and having the kids serve, and of course sing, I knew that one too. That night Darcy and Luke are cute together, they each compliment each other and are no longer arguing with each other.
Darcy is trying to reach one of her clients and he shows up to the event. He tells her integrity matters more than anything else and he will stay with her as his investor wherever she goes. Darcy can finally relax and focus on the event.
Darcy is dancing with Luke and about to tell him how she feels, when she is interrupted by Carl. He shares his feelings and bows out. Okay, so no big fight to separate Darcy and Luke?
Luke sees them and thinks they are back together. Ugh, they went the misunderstanding/eavesdropping mode.
It’s super obvious!
Darcy decides to quit the company she created, as they don’t want her either and talks to her father about coming on board with his company. Darcy then goes to look for Luke but can’t find him. She runs into Caylee who tells her Luke thinks she is with her ex. Darcy searches for Luke but can’t find him, neither can Caylee and Jim.
That’s not good.
She runs outside, and it turns out he didn’t leave but was talking to a future client. They end the film under the mistletoe, Luke knows what it means and Darcy kisses him for real.
So was this better than the book?
Yes, this was a thousand million times better. That book was a solid mess, but this was an actual cute Christmas movie with solid development between the leads. You liked the characters in this, while in the book I hated everyone.
Was this a good Christmas movie?
This was a cute Hallmark film. I mean you know what is going to happen, you know the story-but it wasn’t bad. The characters had good chemistry, it was funny, there are a few places that are a tad cheesy or too predictable, but if you are looking for a sweet, reliable Christmas film this is a good one to watch.
Was this a good Pride and Prejudice film?
NO. While this was better than the book and a cute Christmas film, it is not a good Christmas Pride and Prejudice film. This has nothing to do with the plot of Pride and Prejudice, the characters resemble very little to the Austen characters, along with the plot. If you want a good holiday Jane Austen film The 12 Men of Christmas or Love at the Thanksgiving Day Parade would be a better choice.
The only thing is, I wasn’t sure how it was going to go down or even if she would like it. It can sometimes be hard to get her to watch any of my choices as she doesn’t like “old” films. But we made a deal-every summer when she comes to visit she has to watch at least one of my picks-Back to the Future, The NeverEnding Story, Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure, Indiana Jones, etc.
Not to mention she’s 12 going on thirteen and you know how that can be. Sometimes it is so difficult to get them to like anything. So I was hoping, finger’s crossed, things would go well.
Please, oh please!
Usually when I do a film review-I discuss the actors, costumes, setting, etc-but for this I am just going to put down our thoughts while watching it and then add the rest later. For this I refer to her as “G“.
Okay so here we go…
So the film starts off with Mr. Dashwood dying and having his son John promise that he will help his stepmother and three sisters. The estate is entailed and Mr. Dashwood didn’t plan as carefully as he should have, so the Dashwood ladies will have very little. John does.
We then meet John’s wife-Fanny Dashwood.
Fanny Dashwood is beyond horrible. I think she is the worst of all the Jane Austen characters to be honest. She’s rotten to the core, mean, cruel, doesn’t care about anyone’s feelings, and calls the Dashwoods “not really” family because they are half siblings. She’s one of the characters I wish I could reach into the book and slap silly.
I come from a blended household’s family. So my niece and I both agreed-We hate her!
“G: Aw look at the puppy. It’s so cute.”
Fanny and John move into the house and Fanny brings a dark cloud with her as she disrupts the household, is rude, mean, and we don’t like her.
Marianne is playing the piano, such sad music as she is grieving…you know the part
Elinor Dashwood: Marianne, can you play something else? Mamma has been weeping since breakfast. [Elinor exits; Marianne switches to a dirge. Elinor from the other room] I meant something LESS mournful.
My niece said-
G: “Let them weep-she is probably weeping at my greatness in playing piano.”
Fanny invites her brother Edward to visit at Norland Park, upsetting the household and rooms as Fanny wants him to have the best. They want to hate him, but he’s too likeble and the Dashwood ladies quickly grow to like him.
Edward even endears himself to the youngest Dashwood sister, Margaret. Aw, he even sword fights with her.
You know I never noticed before, but the library is pretty awesome! I definitely need to add it to my “Best Libraries List“.
So Elinor and Edward grow closer and closer together. Walking, talking, being cute, etc. One particular scene I liked between them was this one.
Elinor Dashwood: You talk of feeling idle and useless. Imagine how that is compounded when one has no hope and no choice of any occupation whatsoever.
Edward Ferrars: Our circumstances are therefore precisely the same.
Elinor Dashwood: Except that you will inherit your fortune. We cannot even earn ours.
Edward Ferrars: Perhaps Margaret is right.
Elinor Dashwood: Right?
Edward Ferrars: Piracy is our only option.
It’s like really dude-we are not the same. My dad died and we have to move and we have no money-and you feel “idle and useless”. That sucks, but don’t compare them.
However, Fanny notices this and does all she can to separate them as she doesn’t want her brother with someone as low as the Dashwoods.
John Dashwood sucks. He makes a promise…a DEATHBED promise, and his dad dies and does he fill the promise? NO!
Now I don’t claim to be a wordsmith-but I am proud of this little ditty I wrote while watching this:
“As soon as dad was dead,
and the will had been read,
You girls get no more bread”
Not Shakespeare, but I’m still proud.
The girls are rescued when Mrs. Dashwood’s cousin, Sir John Middleton, offers them his cottage for a reduced rate. Sir John is awesome. Like he is the sweetest guy ever.
He didn’t have to do anything, they aren’t even closely related-just the sweetest man ever. They see the cottage and it isn’t anything like what I think of as a cottage.
“G: That’s a cottage?
I wish I had a little cottage.
This would be hard to go from having wealth, home, and people to assist you, to than be paired down to this.
“G: They probably have to be servants now, because nothing in life is free.”
[Dashwood sister is brushing Margaret’s hair]
“G: This is how I am when my mom does my hair [G then proceeds to do a tiktok dance]”
So the Dashwoods are asked over to Sir John’s for dinner and they meet his mother-in-law, Mrs. Jennings.
“G: Mom should get a job” [Pause in movie as a explain how that was unlikely.]
Sir John is so sweet that he takes care of his mother-in-law, he could have sent her home. He also invites the Dashwoods over, not just this time-but other times as he knows they don’t have a lot of money and cares for them-wanting them to eat well.
I love Mrs. Jennings, too. She’s nosy, but she is so nice.
Mrs. Jeninngs and Sir John pick up that Elinor likes someone and they try to figure out who Elinor’s beau is. Margaret gives it away that it starts with an F…
And I love the face Marianne gives to Margaret to try and get her to stop talking. Such a sister thing to do.
They meet Colonel Brandon at the dinner and it is Alan Rickman and he is so romantic.
Too bad Mrs. Jennings butts in there with her matchmaking. If she hadn’t said anythong or embarrassed her, maybe Marianne would have been more fond of Colonel Brandon. I mean he has a romantic past, loves music and piano, etc.
Marianne is so furious she can hardly get her bonnet off.
Marianne is definitely not interested as Colonel Brandon is “so old”.
Mrs. Dashwood: If Colonel Brandon is infirm then I am at death’s door.
Elinor Dashwood: It is a miracle your life has extended this far.
G: Col. Brandon…that’s the guy you like? He’s OLD!
My niece is like Marianne…well maybe, by the time the movie is over, she will like him?
So Edward had promised to visit the Dashwoods after they settled in, all excited for it-but especially Margaret as he will also bring her favorite atlas. However, he doesn’t come but just sends the atlas and a note. All are disappointed-espechially Margaret.
Poor Margaret, I never thought about it until I watched the film this time-but poor, poor Margaret she has just been disapointed by man after man. Her father died, her brother John sucks, now Edward was supposed to come visit and he disappointed her too.
So one afternoon Marianne and Margaret go for a walk…
Marianne: I’m taking you for a walk.
Margaret: No, I’ve been a walk.
Marianne: You need another.
Margaret: It’s going to rain.
Marianne: It is NOT going to rain.
Margaret: You ALWAYS say that and then it ALWAYS does.
Margaret wasn’t kidding, it rained and it rains hard.
Marianne is running and hurts her ankle. They are soaked and Margaret is freaking out when Willoughby comes riding up on a white horse and carries her home.
“G: I thought you said Willoughby is bad.”
“Me: You’ll just have to watch the movie.”
Willoughby looks so dashing in his coat and on his horse. Margaret and Marianne are in awe.
I love how Elinor instantly becomes Marianne’s wingwoman and finds out the name of the “mysterious” stranger.
[after Marianne has first met Willoughby]
Elinor Dashwood: Marianne, you must change. You will catch a cold.
Marianne: What care I for colds when there is such a man.
Elinor Dashwood: You will care very much when your nose swells up.
Marianne: You are right. Help me, Elinor.
I love that part so much!
So with Marianne recuperating, Sir John comes to visit. I love how the ladies try to pump him for information but all he knows about is Willoughby’s hunting score and the dogs he owns. Such a man!
Such a man!
Colonel Brandon comes to visit Marianne and she is such a jerk. She doesn’t care at all for the beautiful bouquet he brings. I mean Colonel Brandon has his own conservatory, he probably gave her his most prized and rare flowers and she wants Willoughby’s wildflowers he probably stole as he rode to the cottage.
“G: But Colonel Brandon is so old.”
I don’t know if my niece will ever care for Colonel Brandon. I think she’s just too young to appreciate him.
Marianne just completely ignores him and like doesn’t even look at him during the whole scene.
But Colonel Brandon is just as sweet as ever.
I mean don’t even like flowers as a gift, but I would honor the amazing ones Colonel Brandon had versus Mr. Willoughbys.
Marianne and Willoughby are alone
In fact they spend a lot of time together-
The day comes and Marianne is expecting Willoughby to propose. Willoughby and Marianne skip church to be together
But Marianne does not get proposed to. Poor Marianne, she is so naive.
After Mr. Willoughby leaves the Dashwood house is all in hysterics, I feel so bad for Margaret. Poor girl, she is disappointed by another man.
I love that Elinor drinks tea while everyone is upset and crying.
Mrs. Jennings invites her daughter, Charlotte, and son-in-law, Mr. Palmer to visit.
“G: I feel like I’ve seen him before
Me: He’s Dr. House.
G: OH, yes! I love that show.”
Whenever I watch this I wonder why Mr. Palmer married Charlotte.
Mr. Palmer is so perfect. He is so dry and drool while his wife is like a hen clacking on and on. It makes me think of the song from the Music Man.
There is also a Lucy Steele. Lucy Steele zones in on Elinor-she’s like a shark.
I want you!
Lucy reveals that she and Edward are secretly engaged.
What are you talking about??
The girl the guy you like likes is trying to confide in you –awkward
“G: I would have told everybody Lucy’s secret.”
Ouch, this is painful.
Lucy continues to go on and on about her life and story and secret engagement.
“G: I’d be like, I don’t care. Please stop talking to me.”
“Me: Elinor knows everyone’s secrets. They just all feel the need to unload on her.
“G: She’s like Gretchen Weiners”
“Me: That’s why her bonnet’s so big, it’s full of secrets. “
Poor Elinor, to find out the person you are in love with has been engaged for 5 years.
Mrs. Jennings is the best. She’s so nice deciding to take Lucy, Elinor, and Marianne to a full London season.
“G: London! She can go see Willoughby in London.”
Poor G, she was like Marianne and fell for Willoughby.
In London, Marianne writes to Willoughby a lot, but they don’t hear anything back.
Elinor talks about how they have to see John and Fanny as they are also in London-I’d hate to see their faces ever again.
Colonel Brandon comes to see them, but Marianne is so rude and ignores him.
They go to a ball and hear of Mr. Ferrars being there, but it turns out to be Edward’s brother Robert. Ugh, Robert is so annoying.
Lucy enters the frame-ugh. We don’t like her.
G: I would have pushed her in poop.
Me: Like in Back to the Future?”
G: I’d be all ‘Oops I dropped my hairpin’, and knock her over…Or change out her lotion to foot cream.
Me: Yes, Lucy is so Regina George.”
We so do not like Lucy.
Marianne goes to see Willoughby and he disses her in front of everyone. Mr. Willoughby received and threw away every one of Marianne’s letters, ouch.
Lucy is so mean gossiping about the Dashwoods, she is so Regina George.
They leave early and back at the house, I love this scene, Elinor comforts Marianne-it reminds me of comforting my sister when she dated a jerk.
Mrs. Jennings finds out about Mr. Willoughby. It turns out that he is engaged to the wealthy Miss Grey. Ooh, this makes Mrs. Jennings so mad!
Mrs. Jennings goes full mama bear-you hurt my friends I break your face.
Colonel Brandon comes to visit and ask after Marianne, and speak to Elinor.
“G: I hope Elinor doesn’t get with Colonel Brandon”
Colonel Brandon reveals that he has a ward, a ward who has been missing for 8 months. He finally found her and it turns out she is pregnant. She was with Willoughby and he abandoned her. His aunt Lady Allen has refused to leave him anything to punish him (go Lady Allen), and a young man who gambles, has no money, and appreciates the finer things in life-he needed a wealthy wife.
Clearly a Won’tougby
And again, Elinor has collected another secret.
“G: That’s why he is evil! He has a baby and doesn’t care!!! Walks around having kids with people only cares about himself.”
I know. And poor Colonel Brandon, the agony he must have felt worrying about his ward.
Later Lucy also comes to visit.
“Mrs. Jennings: Here’s Lucy to cheer you up.”
“Me: She wouldn’t cheer me up.
G: Ugh, you again.”
Edward comes when she is talking to Lucy, I love this scene so much it is so hilarious.
I love Edward’s face in this scene. Such tension-his face is like I want to vomit I wish I could walk back out of this room.
Of course, Edward and Lucy leave together.
G: We don’t like Lucy. We would push her in horse poop if we could
Me: That’s the truth.
G: We would push him [Willoughby] in horse poop if we could.
Me: We totally should.
Fanny can’t stand her sisters-in-law, but agrees to take Lucy with them as she is in need and so much more refined. The two grow close and Lucy decided to reveal her secret engagement. This is my favorite scene.
Lucy: It is a very great secret. I’ve told nobody in the world for fear of discovery.
Fanny: [greedily] I am the soul of discretion.
Lucy: If I dared tell…
Fanny: I can assure you, I’m as silent as the grave. [Lucy whispers in Fanny’s ear; Fanny’s kindly disposition changes abruptly turning against Lucy, enraged and horrified] Viper in my bosom!
Lucy is sooo lucky Fanny didn’t kill her.
G: Mrs. Jennings ran all the way to spill the tea.
Mrs. Jennings was up early and she finds out what happened and how Edward refused to break up the engagement and lost his inheritance.
Col B is so romantic! He comes to Elinor and gifts Edward his church and “a living” so he and Lucy can get married. So sweet.
“G: Colonel Brandon is so old….You know, I would never name my future daughter Lucy now.
Yes she has ruined it.
Colonel Brandon is the only man who doesn’t disappoint in this film, him and Sir John.
The girls are on their way home when they stop at the Palmers, not too far from Willoughby’s house. Marianne decides to take a walk, even though Elinor attempts to dissuade her.
“Marianne: It shall not rain.”
“G: Don’t you remember last time?”
But it does rain, and Marianne gets stuck out there-this time saved by Colonel Brandon.
Aw, Colonel Brandon carries her all the way from the field to the Palmer’s house. I think it was even farther than Willoughby and therefore he is stronger and better than Willoughby.
“Elinor: [To Mr. Palmer] Marianne needs a doctor”
“G: Good thing he is one. [Laughs]
Me: Let me grab my cane and pull out the whiteboard.”
Colonel Brandon: What can I do?
Elinor Dashwood: Colonel, you have done so much already…
Colonel Brandon: Give me an occupation, Miss Dashwood, or I shall run mad.
He’s so romantic!
They are bloodletting her, she’s so sick.
“G: Gasp, OMG!”
Watching this scene again makes me realize how serious it was when Jane got sick. It makes you realize Mrs. Bennet could have killed her.
Colonel Brandon had left to fetch Mrs. Dashwood, and we he returns the worst is over. Aww, Marianne even thanks him
Back at Barton Cottage, Margaret has a new treehouse. I wonder who built it for her? It had to be Sir John or Colonel Brandon
Marianne and Colonel Brandon visit together, he reading aloud to her. They are so cute!