Sunday, December 6, 2009

Case of the Romantics

It's cold and sorta gloomy, and all I want to do is curl up with tea and a costume drama. That's right, it's that time of year again. I've got a case of the Romantics, and I've got it bad. Here are a couple, of varying length, angst and romance.

Bleak House (2005) Eight hours. EIGHT HOURS. It took us a weeks to watch this one. Needless to say, it's not something you can sit down and enjoy before dinner, but it's great all the same. I mean, it's got every British actor ever plus Gillian Anderson. And characters with names such as Guppy, Nemo, Skimpole and Turvydrop. Seriously now. It's not very romantic, everyone is rather doomed, but don't doubt it's ~romantic power~ nonetheless.

North and South (2004) Four hours. Much more manageable. You can do this in one day. First of all, this one has plot. Unlike Jane Austen's books, there is death and drama and mayhem and politics and death. You shall be shocked by how many people can die in 45 minutes. All that aside, Margaret and Mr. Thonton are the most romantic costume drama couple ever. The side affects of the film include melting into a puddle of goo. And the soundtrack.

Pride and Prejudice (1995) Six hours. There are many versions of this, but this one definitely is most costume-drama-ish. I love it, despite my bagging on it in defense of the Keira version. I'm not fond of the ending, actually, all four versions of Pride and Prejudice seriously screwed up the end, but whatever. It's the quintessential costume drama. It's like the god of costume dramas. It's got Collin Firth and ruffle porn! It'll take something pretty amazing to dethrone it.

Amazing Grace (2006) Two hours. This beautiful movie, with the always amazing Romola Garai, is great because it's different. It's romantic and historical, but it's also true. It tells the story of Wilberforce, and his fight in Parliament to abolish slavery in England. It's really one of the most well-done historical movies I've ever seen. It's totally feel-good, and engrosses you in it's epicness, even though it's only two hours long.

Northanger Abbey (2007) Ninety minutes. This one can be watched inasmuch time as a Disney cartoon. Admittedly, there isn't a lot going on here except romance, but it's pretty darn awesome anyway. Northanger is my favorite of Austen's books, it's less stuffy then her later ones. No one dies in a London ally, no one is disowned or ends a miserable spinster. And of course, Catherine and Tilney are an adorable, incredibly cheery couple.

Miss Pettigrew Lives a Day (2008) Ninety minutes. Does this one count? Maybe not, but it is definitely in the spirit of a good costume drama, in that it has costumes. And drama. But also lots of fun and excitement and joy and happy endings. The book it's based off of is like P.G. Wodehouse, but for girls. Amy Adams is charming as ever, and the soundtrack is just blissful. It's just one of those feel-good movies which leaves you cheery.

Jane Eyre (2006) Three and a half hours. There have been countless Jane Eyre adaptations, and I've seen a bunch of them, but this one is by far my favorite/the best. It captures the mood of the book so well, the angst and mystery. Ruth Wilson is an amazing Jane, really exactly how I imagine her. And of course, there is drama and romance. Jane and Rochester in this movie are amazingly done, he isn't too ugly and grumpy, or too cheery and shemxy.

I'm listening to Till Kingdom Come by Coldplay, eating banana bread, longing to roadtrip, waiting for Christmas. Rock on.


Justin said...

So... I googled Carey Mulligan because i needed a quick picture of a cute girl with short hair. Your blog had the best (available) picture of her. Then I started exploring and I pretty much adore this place.

I don't know what I've accomplished by typing this out.

Also, I absolutely adore Miss Pettigrew.


Sabe said...

Your comment sort of made me the happiest person on earth. :)

Anonymous said...

Love your movie choice! I wish i had the time to sit around and watch them, but alas maybe next week.

P.S. Did i get you started thinking about road trips???

Melissa said...

I think I NEED to see this Miss Pettigrew movie. First off, it looks adorable and the period costumes look great, I love period movies, and you said the magic words, "P.G. Wodehouse for girls". Forget it, I am all over this movie, I must find a Blockbuster that hasn't closed down and rent it.

Also, did I understand you to say that you liked the newer Pride & Prejudice with Keira Knightley? Because I DO, even though a lot of people don't. I like the Colin Firth one too, but the characters in the Keira one seem to feel more like the characters in the book, to me.

I like your blog btw, and thank you for the comment on mine.

Sabe said...

You understand correctly! I love the Keria version! :) It wasn't exactly true to the book in plot, but I thought the overall effect was more sincere.