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Austenland

Austenland

Austenland

I was really keen to see this movie based on Shannon Hale’s novel, but it wasn’t played in any cinemas near me. I bought it as soon as it was released on DVD. It has had some poor reviews, but I thought it was hilarious. An over-the-top romp through most of the conventions that make up Austen adaptations. The actors appeared to be having a ball over-playing their parts – I suspect the critics were expecting something more literary.

In case you don’t know the plot …

Jane Hayes is a seemingly normal young New Yorker, but she has a secret. Her obsession with Mr. Darcy, as played by Colin Firth in the BBC adaptation of Pride and Prejudice, is ruining her love life: no real man can compare. But when a wealthy relative bequeaths her a trip to an English resort catering to Austen-crazed women, Jane’s fantasies of meeting the perfect Regency-era gentleman suddenly become realer than she ever could have imagined.

Decked out in empire-waist gowns, Jane struggles to master Regency etiquette and flirts with gardeners and gentlemen;or maybe even, she suspects, with the actors who are playing them. It’s all a game, Jane knows. And yet the longer she stays, the more her insecurities seem to fall away, and the more she wonders: Is she about to kick the Austen obsession for good, or could all her dreams actually culminate in a Mr. Darcy of her own?

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Jane’s Bedroom – A life Sized Mr Darcy

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Arriving at the Manor House

Jane could only afford the Copper package (rather than the Platinum package) and hence no seat inside the carriage for her. Doesn’t Jane sit in this spot in Joe Wright’s Pride and Prejudice adaptation?

Our first glimpse of the Mr Darcy character (played by JJ Feild)

Our first glimpse of the Mr Darcy character (played by JJ Feild)

Sneaking off and meeting the help.

Sneaking off and meeting the help.

Learning how to shoot a rifle (with the help again)

Learning how to shoot a rifle (with the help again)

Being rescued by Mr Nobley -after her horse wouldn't go.

Being rescued by Mr Nobley -after her horse wouldn’t go.

The aim was to immerse your self in regency life.

Accomplishments - singing, playing the piano and embroidery

Accomplishments – singing, playing the piano and embroidery

Reading

Reading

Having a picnic in the grounds

Having a picnic in the grounds

Jane would often sneak off and meet Martin (the stable boy).Austenland_09

Wandering the grounds.

Bit of a moment in the dark with Mr Nobley

Bit of a moment in the dark with Mr Nobley

Jane decides to be a true Austen heroine and take charge.

Here she is in charge - and with better clothes (she stole one of the other ladies clothes)

Here she is in charge – and with better clothes (she stole one of the other ladies clothes)

They put on a play to entertain themselves before the ball.

 

Rehearsing - perhaps Mr Nobley is not so bad?

Rehearsing – perhaps Mr Nobley is not so bad?

The play

The play

The night we have been waiting for the Ball!

The Ball

The Ball

Escaping to 'something real'

Escaping to ‘something real’

Returning to the real world – disillusionment.

Was Martin a cad after all?

Was Martin a cad after all?

Removing Austen from her house

Removing Austen from her house

Spoiler Alert!

 

 

 

 

 

Happy Ending!

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