Fans of romantic fiction may enjoy this gimmicky comedy, which cleverly plays around with Jane Austen's fiction but kind of misses its own joke. The screenwriters seem to think they're combining sudsy fantasy with darker realism. But actually everything on screen is plainly ridiculous, only livened up by a couple of the actors.
The story starts in America, where Jane (Russell) is so obsessed with Austen's novels that she's sure Mr Darcy is coming for her any day now. So she spends her savings on a holiday at Austenland in England, where Mrs Wattlesbrook (Seymour) lets her clients live as if they're in a 19th century novel. Jane's only fellow guests are Elizabeth and Amelia (Coolidge and King), both of whom flirt shamelessly with Nobley, Andrews and East (Feild, Callis and Whittle), the actors on hand to play dashing bachelors. But Jane is more interested in sexy stable boy Martin (McKenzie).
As the script strains to layer romance and fantasy into this goofy set-up, there are a few snappy one-liners that get us laughing, thanks mainly to the expert improvisation skills of Coolidge, who can make anything funny. By contrast, Russell is annoyingly naive and sulky, while King tips the opposite way into broad farce. The men are more interesting because we occasionally get to see them as the actors they really are, but none of them are very complex, and we can guess where the story is going from the start.
Continue reading: Austenland Review
The Sundance Film Festival is almost over and so far it has been an eventful time. Here's a quick recap and review of this year's proceedings.
While the festival is held in high regard as a celebration of film and filmmakers, quite a few deals have also been struck at this year’s event. Notably, Daniel Radcliffe’s most recent flick Kill Your Darling, portraying the life of poet Alan Ginsberg, which received almost unanamously glowing reviews at the festival, has been picked up by Sony Pictures Classic for about $2 million. Austenland, Stephanie Meyer’s baby, went to Sony as well, for about $4 million, whilst the highly anticipated Don Jon’s Addiction, written, directed and starring Joseph Gordon-Levitt, went to Relativity Media, again for $4 million, with a reported $25 million promotional commitment.
A lot of other expected releases found a home during Sundance as well, and considering the success of certain Sundance films from last year (Beasts of the Southern Wild comes to mind), we probably have quite a few quality releases to look forward to in 2013. Other notable films that have been introduced (and subsequently sold) at the festival have been Prince Avalanche (to Magnolia Pictures), Lovelace (to RADiUS - TWC) and The Way, Way Back (to Fox Searchlight). All information provided by CNN.
Much has happened at the Sundance Film Festival this year, but then again, isn’t that always the case?
An unlikely winner of the audience’s attention was Austenland, a fantasy-and-reality-clash flick about a fictional resort, whose patrons get to live out their dream of living in a Jane Austen novels. And what’s not to like here? The film offers a love story, set in modern times, but also gets to play around with indulgent costumes and period speak – all good fun. What may come as a surprise to some is that one of the brains behind the operation is none other than Stephanie Meyer – yes, she of Twilight infamy. Well, if there’s anything her writing has shown, it’s that romance is like a drug to a particular demographic of young women (and some men), so it’s a small wonder that she is involved in this particular project. The reviews of Austenland are quite mixed at the moment, but the synopsis, at least, suggests that this one might be worth seeing.
Some other highlights of Sundance Festival included, of course, the premiere of May in the Summer on the very first night of the festival and of course, the documentary Anita: Speaking Truth to Power, focusing on the life of Anita Hill, a prominent advocate for women’s rights and against sexual harassment.
Robert Pattinson and Kristen Stewart gave their first interview together since they got back together at the end of this summer, whilst promoting the final instalment of the Twilight films, Breaking Dawn Part 2.
As well as the newly rekindled lovers making an appearance, Taylor Lautner was also on hand to give a word or two, but as you would imagine most of the attention was focused largely on R-Pats and K-Stew.
All the talk was kept strictly about Twilight, with the only time talk veered away from the film coming Pattinson and Stewart were quized about their Halloween costumes. For those of you out of the loop with celebrity Halloween costumes, Stewart went as Natalie Portman’s character from the film Closer, telling the panel that she “loved that movie.” Meanwhile Pattinson went a little more economical by wearing a $3 mask from a local store, reports MTV News.
After an idyllic woodland wedding and Brazilian-island honeymoon, Bella (Stewart) finds herself unexpectedly pregnant by her new vampire husband Edward (Pattinson). But what's growing inside her? Edward's family closes ranks to take care of her fast-growing foetus, watched over by her wolf-pal Jacob (Lautner). The problem is that if Bella dies, as seems likely since the baby is sucking the life from her, the tenuous treaty between vampires and werewolves will be broken, leading to all-out war. This of course puts Jacob in a tricky position.
Continue reading: Breaking Dawn: Part 1 Review
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