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Pride and Prejudice dir. Joe Wright (2005)

October 24, 2015

P and PBased on Jane Austen’s classic novel, the film charts the romance of Mr Darcy and Elizabeth Bennett at a time when making a “good match” was at times, more important than love.

I have never read the book, regarding it as too ‘girly’ and not liking the 18th Century when posh men wore wigs.

The odious parson Collins was played by Tom Hollander, who later appeared in the TV series ‘Rev’. Typecasting? Mr. Collins, a cousin to the Bennet girls, is a minister. As Lizzie plainly states, he’s a ridiculous man. He exists in the story, in part, to provide comic relief, forcing on the Bennets both unwanted sermons and unrequited affection in pursuit of a wife.

Pedant alert: In 1797 the military parade are waving the Union Jack with the cross of St Patrick on it. This was introduced in 1801 as Ireland was brought into the union. On the green outside the Collin’s Rectory is a cenotaph of a type which did not come into use until the 20th Century.

Themes: first impressions, marriage, the role of women and power and influence.

Lizzy must overcome her tendency to prejudge people on insufficient evidence while Darcy must overcome his pride.

“It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune must be in want of a wife.”

“Sometimes the last person on earth you want to be with is the one person you can’t be without.”

“I knew she couldn’t be so beautiful for nothing.”

“Happiness in marriage is entirely a matter of chance, you know. There will always be vexation and grief,”

Mr. Darcy: Miss Elizabeth. I have struggled in vain and I can bear it no longer. These past months have been a torment. I came to Rosings with the single object of seeing you… I had to see you. I have fought against my better judgment, my family’s expectations, the inferiority of your birth by rank and circumstance. All these things I am willing to put aside and ask you to end my agony.

Elizabeth Bennet: I don’t understand.

Mr. Darcy: I love you.

Mr. Darcy: You must know… surely, you must know it was all for you. You are too generous to trifle with me. I believe you spoke with my aunt last night, and it has taught me to hope as I’d scarcely allowed myself before. If your feelings are still what they were last April, tell me so at once. My affections and wishes have not changed, but one word from you will silence me forever. If, however, your feelings have changed, I will have to tell you: you have bewitched me, body and soul, and I love, I love, I love you. I never wish to be parted from you from this day on.

Mr. Darcy: So this is your opinion of me. Thank you for explaining so fully. Perhaps these offences might have been overlooked had not your pride been hurt by my honesty…

Elizabeth Bennet: *My* pride?

Mr. Darcy: …in admitting scruples about our relationship. Could you expect me to rejoice in the inferiority of your circumstances?

Elizabeth Bennet: And those are the words of a gentleman. From the first moment I met you, your arrogance and conceit, your selfish disdain for the feelings of others made me realize that you were the last man in the world I could ever be prevailed upon to marry. [they look at each other for a long time as though about to kiss]

Mr. Darcy: Forgive me, madam, for taking up so much of your time.

[ordered to order Lizzie to accept Mr. Collins’s proposal] Mr. Bennet: Your mother insists on you marrying Mr. Collins…

Mrs. Bennet: Yes! Or I’ll never see her again!

Mr. Bennet: Well, Lizzy, from this day henceforth it seems you must be a stranger to one of your parents…

Mrs. Bennet: Who will maintain you when your father’s gone?

Mr. Bennet: Your mother will never see you again if you do not marry Mr. Collins… and I will never see you again if you do.

Mrs. Bennet: Mr. Bennet!

Elizabeth Bennet: Thank you, Papa.

Mr. Darcy: I love you. Most ardently. Please do me the honour of accepting my hand.

Elizabeth Bennet: Sir, I appreciate the struggle you have been through, and I am very sorry to have caused you pain. Believe me, it was unconsciously done.

Mr. Darcy: Is this your reply?

Elizabeth Bennet: Yes, sir.

Mr. Darcy: Are you… are you laughing at me?

Elizabeth Bennet: No.

Mr. Darcy: Are you *rejecting* me?

Elizabeth Bennet: I’m sure that the feelings which, as you’ve told me have hindered your regard, will help you in overcoming it.

Mr. Darcy: Might I ask why, with so little endeavor at civility, I am thus repulsed?

Elizabeth Bennet: And I might as well enquire why, with so evident a design of insulting me, you chose to tell me that you liked me against your better judgment.

Elizabeth Bennet: Only the deepest love will persuade me into matrimony, which is why I will end up an old maid.

Elizabeth Bennet: Do you deny it, Mr.Darcy? That you seperated a young couple who loved each other, exposing your friend to the censure world of caprice and *my sister* to derision and dissapointed hopes, involving them both in acute misery of the worst kind and…

Mr. Darcy: I do not deny it.

Elizabeth Bennet: How could you do it?

Mr. Darcy: Because I believed your sister was indifferent.

Elizabeth Bennet: Indifferent?

Mr. Darcy: I observed them most carefully and realized his attachment was far deeper than hers.

Elizabeth Bennet: That’s because she’s shy!

Mr. Darcy: Bingley was modestly persuaded that she didn’t feel strongly.

Elizabeth Bennet: Because you suggested it!

Mr. Darcy: I did it for his own good!

Elizabeth Bennet: My sister hardly shows her true feelings to me. [silence] I suppose his… fortune had some bearing?

Mr. Darcy: No, believe me I wouldn’t do your sister the dishonour it was just merely suggested…

Elizabeth Bennet: What was?

Mr. Darcy: [pause] It was clear that an advantageous marriage would be the worst option possible…

Elizabeth Bennet: Did my sister give that impression?

Mr. Darcy: No! No, there was, however, the matter of your family…

Elizabeth Bennet: Our want of connection? Mr. Bingley did not seem to object…

Mr. Darcy: No, it was more than that.

Elizabeth Bennet: How, sir?

Mr. Darcy: It was the lack of propriety shown by your mother, your three younger sisters, and even, on the occasion, your father. [thunder clash, Elizabeth is hurt] Forgive me. You and your sister I must exclude from this.

Elizabeth Bennet: And what about Mr. Wickham?

Mr. Darcy: Mr. Wickham?

Elizabeth Bennet: What excuse can you give for your behaviour toward him? He told of his misfortunes and yet you treat him with sarcasm.

Mr. Darcy: So this is your opinion of me? Thank you. Perhaps these offences might have been had your pride not been hurt by scruples about our relationship. Am to rejoice in the inferiority of your recent circumstances?

Elizabeth Bennet: And those are the words of a gentleman? From the moment I met you your arrogance and conceit and your selfish disdain for the feelings of other made me realize that you are the last man in the world I could ever be prevailed upon to marry.

Elizabeth Bennet: What a beautiful pianoforte.

Georgiana Darcy: My brother gave it to me. He shouldn’t have.

Mr. Darcy: Yes, I should’ve.

Georgiana Darcy: Oh, very well then.

Mr. Darcy: Easily persuaded, is she not?

Elizabeth Bennet: Your unfortunate brother once had to put up with my playing for a whole evening.

Georgiana Darcy: But he says you play so well.

Elizabeth Bennet: Then he has perjured himself most profoundly.

Mr. Darcy: No I said, “played quite well.”

Elizabeth Bennet: Oh, “quite well” is not “very well.” I’m satisfied.

Mr. Bennet: Lizzy, are you out of your senses? I thought you hated the man.

Elizabeth Bennet: No, Papa.

Mr. Bennet: He’s rich, to be sure, and you will have more fine carriages than Jane. But will that make you happy?

Elizabeth Bennet: Have you no objection other than your belief in my indifference?

Mr. Bennet: None at all. We all know him to be a proud, unpleasant sort of fellow… but that would be nothing if you really liked him.

Elizabeth Bennet: I do like him.

Mr. Bennet: Well…

Elizabeth Bennet: I love him.

Mr. Bingley: [overheard by Charlotte and Elizabeth] But her sister Elizabeth is very agreeable.

Mr. Darcy: Barely tolerable, I dare say. But not handsome enough to tempt me. You’d better return to your partner and enjoy her smiles. You’re wasting your time with me. [the two men depart]

Charlotte Lucas: Count your blessings, Lizzy. If he liked you, you’d have to talk to him.

Elizabeth Bennet: Precisely. As it is I wouldn’t dance with him for all of Darbyshire, let alone the miserable half.

Mr. Bennet: Well, if Jane does die, it will be a comfort to know she was in pursuit of Mr. Bingley.

Mrs. Bennet: People do not *die* of colds.

Elizabeth Bennet: Though she may well perish with the shame of having such a mother.

Elizabeth Bennet: [about Mr. Darcy] He is not proud. I was wrong, I was entirely wrong about him. You don’t know him, Papa. If I told you what he’s really like, what he’s done.

Mr. Bennet: What has he done?

Elizabeth Bennet: He’s been a fool about so many things, about Jane, and others… but then, so have I. You see, he and I are so similar. [starts laughing helplessly] We’ve been nonsensical! Papa, I…

Mr. Bennet: [also starts laughing, softly] You really do love him, don’t you?

Elizabeth Bennet: Very much.

Mr. Bennet: How happy for you, Mr. Collins, to possess a talent for flattering with such… delicacy.

Elizabeth Bennet: Do these pleasing attentions proceed from the impulse of the moment, or are they the result of previous study?

Mr. Collins: They arise chiefly from what is passing of the time. And though I do sometimes amuse myself with arranging such little elegant compliments, I always wish to give them as unstudied an air as possible.

Elizabeth Bennet: Oh, believe me, no one would suspect your manners to be rehearsed.

Elizabeth Bennet: He looks miserable, poor soul.

Charlotte Lucas: Miserable he may be, but poor he most certainly is not.

Elizabeth Bennet: Tell me.

Charlotte Lucas: 10,000 a year and he owns half of Derbyshire.

Elizabeth Bennet: The miserable half?

Elizabeth Bennet: I could more easily forgive his vanity had he not wounded mine.

Mr. Darcy: I… do not have the talent of conversing easily with people I have never met before.

Elizabeth Bennet: Perhaps you should take your aunt’s advice and practice?

Elizabeth Bennet: Are you too proud Mr. Darcy? And would you consider pride a fault or a virtue?

Mr. Darcy: That I couldn’t say.

Elizabeth Bennet: Because we’re doing our best to find a fault in you.

Mr. Darcy: Maybe it’s that I find it hard to forgive the follies and vices of others, or their offenses against me. My good opinion, once lost, is lost forever.

Elizabeth Bennet: Oh, dear, I cannot tease you about that. What a shame, for I dearly love to laugh.

Caroline Bingley: A family trait, I think.

Charlotte Lucas: Not all of us can afford to be romantic, Lizzy.

Mr. Darcy: Do you talk, as a rule, while dancing?

Elizabeth Bennet: No… No, I prefer to be unsociable and taciturn… Makes it all so much more enjoyable, don’t you think?

Mrs. Bennet: Have you no consideration for my nerves?

Mr. Bennet: You mistake me, my dear. I have the utmost respect for your nerves. They’ve been my constant companion these twenty years.

Mr. Collins: Charlotte, come here.

Charlotte Lucas: Has the pig escaped again? [looks out window] Oh. It’s Lady Catherine.

Elizabeth Bennet: If I was uncivil, then that is some excuse. But I have other reasons, you know I have.

Mr. Darcy: What reasons?

Elizabeth Bennet: Do you think anything might tempt me to accept the hand of the man who has ruined, perhaps for ever, the happiness of a most beloved sister? Do you deny that you separated a young couple who loved each other, exposing your friend to censure of the world for caprice and my sister to derision for disappointed hopes, involving them both in misery of the acutest kind?

Mr. Darcy: I do not deny it.

Elizabeth Bennet: How could you do it?

Mr. Collins: It’s been many years since I had such an exemplary vegetable.

Elizabeth Bennet: Charlotte!

Charlotte Lucas: My dear Lizzy. I’ve come to tell you the news. Mr. Collins and I are… engaged.

Elizabeth Bennet: To be married?

Charlotte Lucas: Yes of course. What other kind of engaged is there? [Lizzy looks shocked] Oh, for Heaven’s sake! Don’t look at me like that Lizzy! There is no earthly reason why I shouldn’t be as happy with him as any other.

Elizabeth Bennet: But he’s ridiculous!

Charlotte Lucas: Oh hush! Not all of us can afford to be romantic. I’ve been offered a comfortable home and protection. There’s a lot to be thankful for.

Elizabeth Bennet: But…

Charlotte Lucas: I’m twenty-seven years old, I’ve no money and no prospects. I’m already a burden to my parents and I’m frightened. So don’t you judge me, Lizzy. Don’t you dare judge me!

Mrs. Bennet: Now she’ll have to stay the night. Exactly as I predicted.

Mr. Bennet: Good grief, woman. Your skills in the art of matchmaking are positively occult. [Mrs. Bennet giggles]

Elizabeth Bennet: Though I don’t think, Mama, you can reasonably take credit for making it rain.

Elizabeth Bennet: Only the deepest love will persuade me into matrimony.

Elizabeth Bennet: Do you dance, Mr. Darcy?

Mr. Darcy: Not if I can help it.

Netherfield Butler: A Mrs. Bennet, a Miss Bennet, a Miss Bennet and a Miss Bennet, sir.

Caroline Bingley: Oh for heaven’s sake, are we to receive every Bennet in the country?

Elizabeth Bennet: [On Marriage] Is that really all you think about?

Mrs. Bennet: When you have five daughters, Lizzie, tell me what else will occupy your thoughts, and then perhaps you will understand.

Mr. Collins: …which are only to be obtained through intercourse… [pause, thunder] Forgive me… through the intercourse of friendship or civility.

Kitty Bennet: Papa!

Mrs. Bennet: Is he amiable?

Mary Bennet: Who?

Kitty Bennet: Is he handsome?

Mary Bennet: Who?

Lydia Bennet: He’s sure to be handsome.

Elizabeth Bennet: For five thousand a year, it would not matter if he’s got warts and a leer.

Mary Bennet: Who’s got warts?

Mr. Bennet: I’ll give my heartiest consent to his marrying whichever of the girls he chooses.

Lydia Bennet: So will he come to the ball tomorrow, Papa?

Mr. Bennet: I believe so.

Mr. Bingley: Your friend, Miss Lucas, is a most amusing young woman.

Elizabeth Bennet: Oh, yes, I adore her!

Mrs. Bennet: It is a pity she’s not more handsome.

Elizabeth Bennet: Mama!

Mrs. Bennet: Oh, but Lizzie would never admit that she’s plain. Of course, it’s my Jane that’s considered the beauty of the county.

Jane Bennet: No, Mama, please…

Mrs. Bennet: When she was only fifteen there was a gentleman that was so much in love with her that I was sure he would make her an offer. However, he did write us some very pretty verses.

Jane Bennet: Mr. Bingley is just what a young man ought to be. Sensible, good humour…

Elizabeth Bennet: Handsome, conveniently rich.

Jane Bennet: You know perfectly well that I do not believe that marriage should be driven by thoughts of money!

Jane Bennet: Do you really believe he liked me, Lizzie?

Elizabeth Bennet: Jane, he danced with you most of the night and stared at you for the rest of it. But I give you leave to like him. You’ve liked great deal a stupider person. You’re a great deal too apt to like people in general, you know. All the world is good and agreeable in your eyes.

Jane Bennet: Not his friend! I still can’t believe what he said about you.

Elizabeth Bennet: Mr. Darcy? I could more easily forgive his vanity had he not wounded mine. But no matter. I doubt we shall ever speak again.

Mary Bennet: The glories of nature. What are men compared to rocks and mountains?

Elizabeth Bennet: Believe me. Men are either eaten up with arrogance or stupidity. If they are amiable, they are so easily led they have no minds of their own whatsoever.

Mrs. Gardiner: Take care, my love. That savours strongly of bitterness.

Mr. Collins: Mrs. Bennet I was hoping, if it would not trouble you, that I might solicit a private audience with Miss Elizabeth in the course of the morning.

Mrs. Bennet: Oh, yes. Certainly. Lizzy will be very happy indeed. Everyone, out. Mr. Collins would like a private audience with your sister.

Elizabeth Bennet: No, no, wait, please. I beg you. Mr. Collins can have nothing to say to me that anybody need not hear.

Mrs. Bennet: No nonsense, Lizzy. I desire you will stay where you are. Everyone else to the drawing room. Mr. Bennet?

Mr. Bennet: But…

Mrs. Bennet: Now.

Mr. Collins: Mr. Collins at your service.

Jane Bennet: How do you like it here in Hertfordshire, Mr. Bingley?

Mr. Bingley: Very much.

Elizabeth Bennet: The library at Netherfield, I’ve heard, is one of the finest in the country.

Mr. Bingley: Yes, fills me with guilt. Not a very good reader, you see. Prefer being out of doors. Oh, I mean I can read, of course. And I’m not suggesting you can’t read out of doors, of course. Um…

Jane Bennet: I wish I read more but there always seems to be so many other things to do.

Mr. Bingley: Yes, that’s exactly what I meant!

Mrs. Bennet: Oh, Mr. Bennet, the way you carry on, anyone would think our girls look forward to a grand inheritance. When you die, Mr. Bennet, which may in fact be very soon, our girls will be left without a roof to their head nor a penny to their name.

Elizabeth Bennet: Oh, Mama, please. It’s ten in the morning.

Caroline Bingley: I can’t help thinking that at some point someone is going to produce a piglet and we’ll all have to chase it.

Mr. Collins: Do not make yourself uneasy, my dear cousin, about your apparel.

Charlotte Lucas: Just put on whatever you bought that’s best.

Mr. Collins: Lady Catherine has never been averse to the truly humble.

Elizabeth Bennet: [to Mr. Collins] Mr. Collins, I cannot accept you.

Mr. Collins: [regarding Lady Catherine] My small rectory abuts her estate.

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