dangermousie: (Default)
[personal profile] dangermousie

I just very recently watched the UK TV's adaptation of Jane Austen's Persuasion, and Rupert Penry-Jones is smoldering as Captain Wentworth.

The plot, if you don't know it, revolves around Anne Elliot, the 27 year old middle daughter of an empty headed and empty hearted Baronet. This is early 19th century England, so at 27, Anne is, by any definition, an old maid. Of course, she didn't have to be so. When she was 19, she became engaged to a dashing naval officer, Frederick Wentworth. But her family looked down on the match and persuaded her to break it off. Now, older and more secure in herself, she knows she should not have let go of her chance for happiness, and she knows she still loves Frederick, but what can she do? And then he reappears in her life, very very eligible, and very very bitter. Will they find love again?

I am not a huge Jane Austen fan (I know! blasphemy! but I prefer Charlotte Bronte), but Persuasion, with its melancholy, its longing, its evocative emotional state, and its blessing of second chances, is the one JA book I unreservedly love. And Wentworth's letter at the end always makes me cry, and is also probably my favorite JA bit ever.

I can listen no longer in silence. I must speak to you by such means as are within my reach. You pierce my soul. I am half agony, half hope. Tell me not that I am too late, that such precious feelings are gone for ever. I offer myself to you again with a heart even more your own than when you almost broke it, eight years and a half ago. Dare not say that man forgets sooner than woman, that his love has an earlier death. I have loved none but you. Unjust I may have been, weak and resentful I have been, but never inconstant. You alone have brought me to Bath. For you alone, I think and plan. Have you not seen this? Can you fail to have understood my wishes? I had not waited even these ten days, could I have read your feelings, as I think you must have penetrated mine. I can hardly write. I am every instant hearing something which overpowers me. You sink your voice, but I can distinguish the tones of that voice when they would be lost on others. Too good, too excellent creature! You do us justice, indeed. You do believe that there is true attachment and constancy among men. Believe it to be most fervent, most undeviating, in F. W.

I must go, uncertain of my fate; but I shall return hither, or follow your party, as soon as possible. A word, a look, will be enough to decide whether I enter your father's house this evening or never.


This adaptation is not as wonderful as the amazing movie from the 1990s, starring Ciaran Hinds and Amanda Root, but it's still very very good.

And as proof?

I bring you pictures. Stills.

Mmmm. Looking stern (btw, if you want to know how huge a departure drama men are for me, RPJ is basically my ideal type before I got into dramas: blond, pale, and blue eyed):

Bath is so pretty:


At the end (omg, he is swinging her around):

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November 2012

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