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Becoming Jane

Jane Austin’s real-life inspiration for writing "Pride and Prejudice" is the subject of this temperamental period piece with Anne Hathaway fairly miscast as the young would-be author whose romantic sensibilities are ruffled by Tom Lefroy (James McAvoy), an Irish lawyer-in-training. Tom’s under class social standing proves a bridge too far in spite of Jane’s deepening affection for the man that her family firmly rejects. McAvoy shines in the role of a good-hearted rogue, and director Julian Jarrold ("Kinky Boots") depicts 18th-century England with a convincing less-is-more approach. Jarrold delivers an emotional zinger during the film’s outro that solidifies the otherwise underdeveloped narrative. Special features include English, Spanish, and French subtitles, a commentary track with director Julian Jarrold, screenwriter Kevin Hood, and producer Robert Bernstein, a "pop-up facts" feature, a making-of featurette, and a collection of deleted scenes. Aspect ratio is 2.35:1 anamorphic widescreen, with sound quality processed in Dolby Digital 5.1. (Movie – Three Stars, DVD features – Three Stars) Rated PG, 120 mins. (Miramax)

February 17, 2008 in Historical Drama | Permalink