I wasn't really planning on writing about each Austen movie shown Sunday nights on PBS, but I had to write about this one because it was so bad. And nothing gives me inspiration to write more than a badly done Austen film.
I knew it was going to be bad when in the first 5 minutes, Fanny told us that she was in love with Edward. I shouldn't have been told that, I should have been shown that. That was the case in the whole movie. People were doing the right things (well, kinda, they left a lot out) but they had to tell us, or have others tell us, what they were feeling and thinking. Lame.
Also, Fanny was a bit annoying. Why was she always running and skipping and giggling? She was supposed to be shy and meek and frail. And her hair was always down. She just looked like a really big 12 year old. The movie didn't give you any idea of who she was. And don't even get me started on the fact that she caved and was in the play. The whole point of that part of the book was that she wouldn't be in the play even when Edward caved. Silly director/producer/script writer people.
I must say though, the end where Edward has the epiphany that he loved her, was highly amusing. I thought he was having a seizure or something. Although to be fair, I think Edward's acting was the one good thing about this adaptation. But when the two of them danced, it went from amusing to embarrassing. The kind of embarrassing when you turn red that you are even having to watch the scene.
Overall, it was very very bad. I would recommend the '99 version but I didn't really like it either. It was too opinionated about slavery which came from right field. So if you want to know what happens in Mansfield Park, you had better read the book.
Oh, I found the horrible scene on YouTube. Here is when Edward finally figures out that he has loved Fannie the whole time. And all because she choose purple. Who knows what would have happened if she had said maroon? It is just the first minute or so. But if you keep watching you can see another huge blunder when Edward goes into her bedroom while she is getting ready for bed. Highly improper.