Period Dramas and Romance Movies #MFRWAuthor #amblogging

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This week’s MFRW 52 Week Blog Challenge asks the question what are your favorite movies inspired by books.

Pride & Prejudice TV coverWell, of course, I have to start with my beloved Jane Austen books, movies and TV mini-series: Pride and Prejudice, Sense and Sensibility, Persuasion and Emma. While I love the P&P movie, my favorite is the 5-hour BBC mini-series with Colin Firth as Darcy. In my mind, no one will ever surpass his performance. To me, he is the definitive Darcy.

I recently reviewed the book and movie of Pride and Prejudice and Zombies. In short, I thought this was the rare case of the movie being better than the book.

The movie version of Persuasion, with Amanda Root and Ciaran Hinds, is my favorite film version of that marvelous book. It was Austen’s last published book before she died and the most emotional. Root and Hinds conveyed so much with facial expressions that I was moved to tears. If you haven’t seen it, it’s just lovely.

I also enjoyed the film versions of Emma, with Gwyneth Paltrow in the title role, and Sense and Sensibility, starring Emma Thompson and Kate Winslett as the Dashwood sisters. I liked the score of S&S so well, I listen to it while writing my Regency romances.

last of the mohicansAnother favorite is the movie of The Last of the Mohicans, starring Daniel Day-Lewis. Though it deviated a bit from the book, which I also enjoyed, I loved the film version of the story. I listened to the score while writing my French & Indian War story, Rogue’s Hostage.

Lest you think I read and watch nothing but period dramas, I also enjoyed both book and movie of Me Before You. I found it a delightful, quirky story with an inevitable sad but hopeful ending.

Linda at HPWAnd I can’t forget the Harry Potter books and movies. I read all the books and watched all the movies except the very last one. I recently made a trip to Harry Potter World at Universal Studios, Hollywood, and loved it. I turned into a big kid, as you can see by the picture of me in my Ravenclaw robe, wand in hand. I’m ready for Halloween now.

There are lots more movies based on books that I enjoyed, from Gone With the Wind and The Killer Angels/Gettysburg to The Hunger Games, but I won’t natter on endlessly.

What are your favorite movies based on books?


Click below for more fun posts in the #MFRWAuthor 52 Week Blog Challenge.



Book Review Club: Pride and Prejudice… and Zombies?

P&P and Zombies coverPride and Prejudice and Zombies
By Seth Grahame-Smith and Jane Austen
Published October 1st 2009 by Quirk Books

I tried to resist this book, but when the movie was on TV last fall, I recorded it. Then when my readers group decided to do Books into Films as a topic, I checked out the library e-book and read it. I have to say, I found the book to be kind of weird, mostly Jane Austen but with the zombie stuff and martial arts thrown in. I didn’t think the author did a good job of really making the zombies seem an integral part of the story, but I did kind of like the idea of Lizzy and her sisters as kick-ass martial artists and zombie killers. The class distinctions were played up by the aristocrats, like Darcy and Lady Catherine de Burgh, preferring Japanese martial arts, and looking down on the Bennett girls, who were trained by “Chinese peasants”.

In the final analysis, I enjoyed reading P&P again, and I chuckled at many of Grahame-Smith’s insertions.It’s pretty hard to improve upon Jane Austen. Impossible really.

A friend who is in graduate school told me that zombies, which are so popular nowadays, are “a metaphor for modernization or modernity, at least that is the way literary scholars are interpreting the book, where life increasing eats people up and turns them into walking dead…”

I have to say, I really didn’t get that from the book, and honestly, I don’t think that was Grahame-Smith’s reason for writing the book. I think he was looking for a high concept read that would sell lots of books and land him a movie deal, which is what happened. But color me cynical.

DVD coverAfter reading the book, I watched the film. The movie script, which actually changed Jane Austen’s plot, made more sense to me as a zombie movie. They really upped the stakes and made the zombie threat seem credible and menacing. I liked the actress who played Elizabeth, but I wasn’t as crazy about the actor who played Darcy. But then, I hold Colin Firth up as the model for the perfect Darcy, so that’s a high standard to meet. 😉

It’s very unusual of me to say a movie was better than the book it was based on, but this is one of those exceptions.

I’d love to know what others thought of the book and/or movie, so leave a comment. And click on the graphic below for more great reviews in Barrie Summy’s Book Review Club.


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